Cardiff is soap opera capital of the UK, research suggests

Cardiff is the soap opera capital of the UK, Glasgow its true crime TV hub and Leeds home to the most avid sport watchers, research has suggested.

The survey was commissioned by Virgin Media to mark the last week of voting for the must-see moment award at the TV Baftas.

It found viewing habits are being shaped by social media, with 31% of Britons surveyed saying they are more likely to watch a show if they have seen an online meme about it – such as the smug detective Patricia Carmichael from Line Of Duty.

Line of Duty
Anna Maxwell Martin starred in Line Of Duty as Detective Chief Superintendent Patricia Carmichael, and soon became a popular online meme (BBC/PA)

The survey also found geographic differences in TV tastes.

In Cardiff, 41% of those surveyed said they are soap opera fans, a higher percentage than anywhere else in the country.

Glaswegians are the biggest watchers of true crime, with 55% saying they are fans of the genre, while 39% of respondents in Leeds said they are most likely to watch sport.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Edinburgh, home of the Festival Fringe, is the UK’s comedy capital. Of those surveyed, 57% said they enjoy watching comedy shows on TV.

In Plymouth, 76% said they enjoy a gripping drama series while in Cambridge 66% said they prefer documentaries.

TV remote stock
New research has suggested Leeds is the sports-watching capital of the UK (Stock image/Luciana Guerra/PA)

According to the survey, viewers from Sheffield emerged as the biggest fans of game shows with 46% of respondents enjoying the genre, while 46% of people from Leicester like to unwind with cookery programmes.

Mancunians are the most likely to enjoy watching home improvement programmes, according to 24% of those surveyed, while 36% of viewers from Newcastle said they prefer shows the family can enjoy together.

Overall, drama is the nation’s favourite TV genre, with 62% saying they cannot resist a gripping TV show, according to the survey.

Voting for the Virgin Media must-see moment is online at and closes on Monday May 24 at 5pm.

The Bafta TV Awards are set to take place on June 6.