One in three 'believes in angels'
Nearly one in three Britons believe they have a guardian angel watching over them, according to a new survey.
Online research for the Bible Society and Christian Research into the views of 1,038 people has shown 31% believe in angels, with 17% saying they are not sure.
A further 5% - or one in 20 - told the ICM poll conducted last week that they believe they have seen or heard an angel, with 29% saying they think a guardian angel is watching over them.
The research shows the London region has the highest levels of belief in angels at 40%, with the North East scoring the lowest at 17%.
People in the London region also scored the highest for belief in a guardian angel watching over them, at 37%, compared to 22% in Scotland and the North East.
The survey shows 45% of those interviewed from Oxford and 43% of those from Hull said they believe they have a guardian angel, with this figure falling to 16% for those in Edinburgh and Plymouth.
But research organisers warned that the city results are based on small numbers - with just 17 people interviewed from Oxford, 19 from Hull, 39 from Edinburgh and 27 from Plymouth. Other findings show nearly four in five people, or 79%, believe Nativity plays should be performed in schools - with the 45 to 54 age group most supportive at 88%.
Canon Dr Ann Holt, Bible Society director of programme, said: "There is plenty of evidence that there are presences in this world beyond the human.
"The fact that a third of this country believes in angels is a sign of a spiritual need within many of us. An angel is God's messenger and the Bible affirms this through the many appearances of angels in different forms.
"It is interesting that Tony Jordan, the writer of the BBC's Nativity, has chosen to show the angel Gabriel, for example, in conventional human form."