Thursday 18 July 2019 4:55 pm

David Attenborough and the Queen remain British public’s most admired figures

The people have spoken, and they remain unmoved: David Attenborough and the Queen have emerged as Britain’s most admired public figures for the second year running.

According to an annual Yougov poll, the documentary maker is far-and-away the most admired man in the UK, romping to victory with the backing of a quarter of voters. 

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His 25.8 per cent score was more than 10 percentage points higher than his nearest challenger, second-place former US President Barack Obama.


It was a good outing for the Obamas, with former first lady Michelle coming second on the list of most admired women, too.

The royal family remain among Britain’s most admired figures (Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II secured 22.6 per cent of the vote, ahead of Michelle Obama’s 13 per cent.

Actor Judi Dench, novelist JK Rowling and young women’s rights activist Malala Yousafzai rounded off the top five most admired women.

Prince William, Prince Harry and Microsoft founder Bill Gates came in third, fourth and fifth for the men.

Michelle Obama and Bill Gates ‘most admired people in the world’

Among voters around the world, Gates remains the world’s most admired man, having topped the list every time YouGov has conducted the survey. 

This year’s study expanded to cover the views of people in 41 countries – the most ever – with more than 42,000 people being interviewed to compile the list.

Michelle Obama was voted the world’s most admired woman (Getty)

The world’s top five men remain unchanged since last year. Barack Obama comes in second, and the third to fifth places are all occupied by Chinese figures: actor Jackie Chan in third, Chinese President Xi Jinping in fourth and businessman Jack Ma in fifth.


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The top twenty most admired women sees five new faces this year. Two are married to the world leaders: Melania Trump and Chinese singer Peng Liyuan, who is the wife of President Xi Jinping. They are joined by Chinese scientist Tu Youyou, Indian actress Sushmita Sen and US talk show host Ellen DeGeneres.

Main image: Getty

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