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Christmas songs: love them or hate them, but can you work with them? 

Christmas lights on shop window

Each December Christmas music is an annual tradition in Britain and many countries across the globe.

Throughout the years Christmas songs have dominated the ears of shoppers all over the country, with stores playing the regular classics, Whams ‘Last Christmas’ and The Pogues ‘Fairytale of New York’. The music blasting from store to store always seems to lift spirits whilst cramming in the Christmas shopping.

However, for some workers this can be the worst time of the year. Busy shops and constant repeats of the same 5 songs. The recent headline news of ‘The York Gin Shop’ banning Christmas music to stop their employees going mad, proves the agony they go through.

The shop has taken a different approach to the typical Christmas music we see in shops, playing a variety of different songs.

Sandie Tanner-Smith, the shop’s manager, said: “We’re confident we’ll have the happiest staff and customers around with these changes. Our new playlist is big enough to make sure no one hears the same Christmas song more than twice in a week.”

inside Tesco store

Shoppers love it, but how do retail workers feel?

I visited a few other shops to talk to employees about whether they enjoy being bombarded with Christmas songs from late October to Christmas day. I gave a rating from 1 to 5 of how good the selection of songs is, with help from the shop staff.

Georgia, Space NK: “I really enjoy having Michael Bublé playing in the background, it’s cheery and puts me in a good mood.”

Space NK: ∗∗∗∗

Well who doesn’t like Michael Bublé? Defiantly gets you in the Christmas spirit without being too cheesy.

Tesco: ∗∗∗

Catchy songs, with a lot of variety.

Tom, The Lowther: “Love Christmas songs but hearing the same songs on repeat at work is a bit draining.”

The Lowther: ∗∗

Typical, cheesy, Christmas hits.

James, Vodafone: “Made me want to rip my ears off listening to Christmas songs from November 1st to Christmas Eve.”

Vodafone: ∗

Very repetitive, cheesy songs. With the Christmas ad playing in-between driving employees up the wall!

Alex, Next: “The Christmas playlist is good, they’re slowly getting us into the Christmas spirit using a playlist with a mixture of Christmas music and regular songs.”

Next: ∗∗∗∗

A good idea to mix up Christmas songs with regular songs, it ensures the music isn’t too repetitive and gives employees a break.

Ellie, Accessorise: “They actually don’t start until the 1st of December here. What I remember from last year they were very festive and cheerful, but annoying. It was the same 5 Christmas songs on repeat all day.”

Accessorise: ∗∗

Alice, Tesco: “I’ve been working here for around 12 years now and every year the playlist consists of the same songs. At first it’s nice and christmassy but the more it plays the more unbearable the songs become.”

Tesco: ∗

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