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UK Chart History

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This page lists a timeline for UK music charts from 1940-1952 (The Missing Charts era) and 1952-2013.

1940-1952 (The Missing Charts era)Edit

Chart History AlterationsEdit

Due to the Missing Charts revelation, several chart records and stats are now incorrect.

  • I Believe - Frankie Laine was the No.1 with the most Weeks at No. 1 - 18 Weeks, in 3 'Runs', during 1953. Now it is beaten by White Christmas, by Bing Crosby. That went to No.1 in 1942, 1945, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, & 1951 - for a Total of 24 Weeks. (added in 9 Weeks
    of missing Charts. It has 15 No.1 Weeks without them).
  • Until now only 2 No.1 Hits have reached No.1 as many as 3 times. They were I Believe - Frankie Laine, (1953), & Singing The Blues - Guy Mitchell, (1957). Both are now easily beaten by Bing Crosby's White Christmas, which was No.1 in 8 different Chart Runs - 1942, & 1945 to 1951. (It was a No.2 Hit in 1943 & 1944).
  • The 1st No.1 is no longer Al Martino's Here In My Heart. It is now Vera Lynn's We'll Meet Again.
  • Here In My Heart gets 8 Weeks at No.1 in the Book. Added to its 9 in the NME Charts, gives it 17 No.1 Weeks.
  • Rihanna's Umbrella, (2007 - 10 Weeks), is no longer the Single with most Weeks at No.1 by a Female Artist.
    • That Old Black Magic - Judy Garland - 14 Weeks (1943)
    • Cornish Rhapsody - Harriet Cohen - 14 Weeks (1944/1945) (includes 2 missing chart weeks)
    • Music! Music! Music! - Teresa Brewer - 12 Weeks (1950)
  • Judy Garland goes from having just 1 Hit, (No.18 in 1955), to having several, with 14 in the Top 10
    - 4 at No.1, including Over The Rainbow. (The Book says 'The Trolley Song' was a 1945 No.2 Hit,
    in the Judy Garland Section - Page 254. But on Page 110 it is shown as being at No.1, (1 Week), in
    the Chart of W/B 4th June 1945. So, she had 4 No.1's - not 3).
  • The Ink Spots had just 1 Hit until now - Melody Of Love. (No.10 - 1955). Now they have many Hits, With 9 of them going to No.1. One of them, (Bless You), went to No.1 twice. For 8 Weeks in 1940/1941, & for 9 Weeks in 1946. Giving it 17 Weeks at No.1 - 18 if you add in a missing Week at the end of 1940. That either puts it equal to Here In My Heart, by Al Martino - 17. Or equal to I Believe by Frankie Laine - 18. (I'm counting Bless You as 1 of their 9 No.1's - not 2)
  • The 9 Ink Spots No.1's spent 61 Weeks on Top. (Counting one missing Chart Week). That gives them the 4th most Weeks at No.1 in the Singles Chart. Bing Crosby is 1st - 192 Weeks. (Or 183 - depending if you include 9 missing Chart Weeks). Elvis Presley is 2nd, (80 Weeks), & The Beatles are 3rd, (69 Weeks). It also means that only The Beatles have more Singles Weeks at No.1, as regards Groups.
  • Elvis Presley, (18 0r 21, depending how you count), no longer has the most UK No.1 Hits. Bing Crosby has 44!
  • The Andrews Sisters go from having Zero Hits, to having several. 9 of them at No.1, which puts them equal with the Spice Girls, as regards Female Groups. (4 of the Andrews Sisters No.1's were with Bing Crosby). Their 9 No.1's give them 40 No.1 Weeks - the most Singles Chart No.1 Weeks by any Female Act. (The Spice Girls also spent 40 Weeks at No.1 in the UK, but 22 Weeks were from Singles, & 18 Weeks from Albums. The Andrews Sisters have never had a UK Hit Album. Or any Hit Singles, until now).
  • Al Jolson has had Zero Hit Singles, until now. He now has many, with 7 of them reaching No.1. Including the longest consecutive 'Run' at No.1 ever, by the same Artist. That was in 1947 when Swanee/April Showers was No.1 for 9 Weeks. He then replaced himself at No.1 with The Anniversary Song, & that was No.1 for 10 Weeks.
  • Frank Sinatra gains 10 more No.1 Hits, to raise him from 3 to 13.
  • Vera Lynn has 6 more No.1's - giving her 7 rather than 1.
  • Doris Day goes from 2 to 5.
  • Guy Mitchell from 4 to 8.
  • Johnnie Ray from 3 to 6.
  • Nat 'King' Cole has his first No.1 Singles - 4. He's never been higher than No.2 before.

1940Edit

  • On 01/01/1940, the very first UK singles chart was published and was 30 positions long, until 15/11/1952. The charts are dated on Mondays until the 'known' chart era.

1952Edit

  • The last 'missing chart' to be published was on 27/10/2013. However, the week beginning chart for 03/11/1952 (and therefore week ending 08/11/1952) would be missing from the charts due to the chart dating system being changed from a Monday to the week ending Saturdays.

1950sEdit

1952Edit

  • 15/11/1952 - First 'known' UK Singles Chart - 12 positions long. The first UK Singles number one single was Here In My Heart by Al Martino. The dates are changed to every Saturday.

1953Edit

  • 24/10/1953 - Ties for positions no longer allowed more than one position of the same number. This was then changed back to the old regime on  ??, until 16/01/1954 it was changed back to the new regime, reverting to the old until 15/05/1953, going back to the old regime until ??.

1954Edit

  • 02/10/1954 - The UK Singles Chart increased to 20 positions long.

1955Edit

  • 31/12/1955 - For only one week at Christmas the chart is 25 positions long. Previous Christmas weeks were not published before hand.

1956Edit

  • 14/04/1956 - The UK Singles Chart increased to 30 positions long.
  • 28/07/1956 - First UK Albums Chart - 5 positions long. The first number one album was Songs For Swingin' Lovers by Frank Sinatra.

1960sEdit

1960Edit

  • 12/03/1960 - The Official Charts Company began archiving a top 40 for the single and albums.
  • 02/04/1960 - The UK Singles and Album Chart were increased to 50 positions long.

1969Edit

  • 11/02/1969 - The Official Charts Company took over the job of compiling the UK Singles and Album Chart after NME.

1970sEdit

1973Edit

  • The Christmas week is not published for the first time since Christmas 1954.

1978Edit

  • 13/05/1978 - The UK Singles and Album Chart were increased to 75 positions long.

1980sEdit

1983Edit

  • 04/01/1983 - The UK Singles and Album Chart were increased to 100 positions long.

1988Edit

  • 14/01/1989 - All Various Artists albums drop out of the UK Albums Chart, due to the UK Compilations Chart being created during that time

1990sEdit

1991Edit

  • April/May 1991 - The UK Singles and Album Chart were reduced from a top 100 to a top 75 due to Record Mirror's publication being discontinued. The charts were then increased back to a top 100 on .
  • 1991 - The UK Singles and Album Chart were increased back to a top 100.
  • May 1991 - The UK Singles Chart was increased to 200 positions long and the Albums Chart up to 150, although the Top 101-200 data was only available through UK Charts Plus via a paid subscription service.

1996Edit

  • November 1996 - The UK Albums Chart was extended to 200 positions long.

2000sEdit

2004Edit

  • March 2004 - The Chart Archive site is created by Mazilladon to archive UK Singles and Albums from 1952. The Official Charts Company then asked Mazilladon to take the chart data off the site because it breaches OCC's database rights on 15/11/2012 (exactly 60 years after the first UK Singles Chart!).

2008Edit

  • Christmas 2008 - The first campaign against the X Factor's winner's single results in a Hallelujah being both number 1 (Alexandra Burke's version) and number 2 (Jeff Buckley's version)


2010sEdit

2010Edit

2012Edit

  • 05/10/2012, 18:16 - The UK Charts Archive Wiki is created.
  • 15/11/2012 - The Official Charts Company asks Mazilladon to take the chart data off the site because it breaches OCC's database rights (exactly 60 years after the first UK Singles Chart!).


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Chart LengthsEdit

SinglesEdit

Note: The chart weeks from 01/01/1940-27/10/1952 were dated as week beginning (Mondays).

Period No. of singles chart positions No. of album chart positions Notes

01/01/1940-

27/10/1952

30 - The first Missing Charts era year

w/b 03/11/1952

(w/e 08/11/1952)

- - No chart was published for this week

15/11/1952-

25/09/1954

12 - The first 'known' UK charts era

02/10/1954-

24/12/1955

20 -
31/12/1955 25 - Changed to a top 25 for one week only for the Christmas week

07/01/1956-

07/04/1956

20 - Changed back to a top 20

14/04/1956-

05/03/1960

30
12/03/1960- 50

AlbumsEdit

Period No. of positions Notes

28/07/1956-

01/11/1958

5 The first UK Album chart

08/11/1958-

19/03/1960

10

26/03/1960-

09/04/1966

20

16/04/1966-

03/12/1966

30

10/12/1966-

08/02/1969

40
15/02/1969 13 The album chart shrunk to a top 13

22/02/1969-

01/03/1969

15
08/03/1969 30 The chart returned to a top 30
15/03/1969 15 Shrunk back to a top 15
22/03/1969 13 Shrunk to a top 13
29/03/1969 14 Top 14
05/04/1969 15 Top 15
12/04/1969 12 Top 12
19/04/1969 11 Top 11
26/04/1969 12 Top 12
03/05/1969 14 Top 14
10/05/1969 15 Top 15
17/05/1969 13
24/05/1969 12
31/05/1969 14
07/06/1969 13

14/06/1969-

21/06/1969

20

28/06/1969-

04/10/1969

40

11/10/1969-

25/10/1969

25
01/11/1969 22

08/11/1969-

29/11/1969

24

06/12/1969-

20/12/1969

23
27/12/1969 19

03/01/1970-

17/01/1970

20
24/01/1970 58
55

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