National treasure Sir David Attenborough has the nation’s favourite voice

National treasure Sir David Attenborough has the nation’s favourite voice

National treasure Sir David Attenborough has the nation’s favourite voice, it has emerged.

The much-loved 92-year-old broadcaster beat Hollywood great Morgan Freeman to claim the top spot.

In third place was actor and author Stephen Fry, followed by Dame Judi Dench and former 007 Sir Sean Connery.

Other famous names to make the top 50 include ex U.S President Barack Obama, movie legend Samuel L. Jackson and the Queen.

A spokesman for Scrivens Opticians & Hearing Care, which carried out the study, said: “We recognise how different voices sound and have our own personal favourites, from the inspirational and most trustworthy to those that sooth and move us emotionally.

“The power of the spoken word can’t be underestimated, communication is an essential part of our mental wellbeing, which is why it’s so important that we take care of our hearing throughout our lives.”

Despite Dame Judi’s high ranking, the top 20 favourite voices are dominated by men and home grown talent, with Freeman, Obama and Samuel L. Jackson the only Americans to feature.

Idris Elba, heavily tipped to become the next James Bond, made it to number 11 in the list with Welsh crooner Tom Jones close behind.

The top preference for women’s voices is soft, upbeat and husky, which fits with the few that made the top 20, including Joanna Lumley OBE, the Queen and Dame Helen Mirren.

For men, the top preferences are deep, slow and soft.

U.S President Donald Trump topped the poll of most annoying voices, closely followed by Celebrity Juice host Keith Lemmon.

Most people (72 per cent) cringe when they hear recordings of their own voice and more than half of those polled had judged people solely on their voice.

Most worryingly, a quarter admitted they struggle to hear what people say to them when talking face to face.

And over half of those polled had never had their hearing checked.

The Scrivens spokesperson added: “It’s hard to admit that we can’t always hear but it’s more common than we think with over 10 million adults in the UK suffering from some degree of hearing loss.

That’s why regular hearing checks are so important, and help is available on every high street.”

Comprehensive hearing tests and NHS hearing aids are free of charge.


1. Sir David Attenborough
2. Morgan Freeman
3. Stephen Fry
4. Dame Judi Dench DBE
5. Sir Sean Connery
6. Brian Blessed OBE
7. Joanna Lumley OBE
8. Barack Obama
9. David Tennant
10. Sir Billy Connolly CBE
11. Idris Elba
12. Sir Tom Jones OBE
13. The Queen
14. Dame Helen Mirren DBE
15. Liam Neeson OBE
16. Sir Anthony Hopkins CBE
17. Samuel L Jackson
18. Hugh Grant
19. Dame Julie Andrews DBE
20. Sir Ian McKellen CBE
21. Benedict Cumberbatch CBE
22. Tom Hanks
23. Nigella Lawson
24. Ewan McGregor OBE
25. Holly Willoughby
26. James Earl Jones
27. Dame Maggie Smith DBE
28. Moira Stewart OBE
29. Alexander Armstrong
30. Robert De Niro
31. Tom Baker
32. Hugh Jackman
33. Arnold Schwarzenegger
34. Tom Hiddleston
35. Dawn French
36. Harrison Ford
37. Gareth Southgate
38. Mary Berry CBE
39. Jim Broadbent
40. Jeremy Irons
41. Mariella Frostrup
42. Lorraine Kelly OBE
43. Cerys Matthews
44. Meryl Streep
45. Kelsey Grammer
46. Al Pacino
47. Christopher Walken
48. Cheryl Cole
49. Jennifer Lawrence
50. Susanna Reid