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More than a third of Irish people will watch television with their Christmas dinner

More than a third of people will keep an eye on the TV while tucking into their Christmas dinner, according to research.

A poll for RadioTimes.com looked at how much time people spend watching television on Christmas Day.

More than a third (35pc) admitted they always or sometimes fail to turn off the telly while enjoying their meal.

The research also found that 15pc will spend five to eight hours in front of the box and 9pc more than eight hours on Christmas Day.

Around 35pc will sit down to between three and five hours, while 34pc will watch one to three.

More than a third (40pc) said they could not live without TV on Christmas Day, while wifi access (24pc) and a smart phone (16pc) were also deemed essentials.

Exactly half said they thought there are more TV repeats on Christmas Day than before.

In the UK, the Queen's Christmas message appears to be more popular this year - 46pc said they would not tune in for the occasion, down from 64pc last year. Only 5pc named the annual address as the Christmas TV they could not miss.

RadioTimes.com editor Tim Glanfield said: "Christmas is a time for great TV and movies and it seems nothing comes between some families and their festive viewing - not even Christmas dinner."

More than 1,100 people were surveyed for the poll.