70 Years of the Official Singles Charts
17 November 2022 - 5 March 2023
November 14th 2022 will mark 70 years since the first singles chart was published by the New Musical Express’s Percy Dickins in 1952, topped by Al Martino’s Here In My Heart.
To mark this moment, the BME is partnering with the Official Charts Company to honour the UK’s chart-topping singles over those 70 years in a temporary exhibition.
The Official Charts have been a central part of British popular culture for 70 years and counting. With their finger on the throbbing pulse of the British record-buying, digital-downloading, music-streaming public, the Official Charts are the UK’s only official, trusted weekly barometer of what’s popular in music right now.
As heard on BBC Radio 1, Top Of The Pops and MTV, the Top 40 Official Singles Chart has been chronicling the tastes of arguably the most influential music nation on the planet since the very first UK singles chart in November 1952. From The Beatles to Beyoncé, The Rolling Stones to Rihanna, Kylie to Miley, and Spice Girls to Little Mix, the Official Chart has crowned artist success week in, week out, across seven glittering decades.
Whether it is Blur and Oasis locking horns in 1995, the Sex Pistols’ God Save The Queen controversially being held off Number 1 during the Queen’s Jubilee in 1977, or Rage Against The Machine taking on the X Factor in 2009’s greatest Christmas Number 1 battle in history – the Official Charts aren’t just the authority on what is popular in Britain, the Official Charts are British pop culture.
Keep up with the Official Charts at OfficialCharts.com, on social media @OfficialCharts, and on TikTok @OfficialUKCharts.
Entry to the exhibition is included in the price of admission. All tickets purchased are valid for 12 months and each eligible visitor has the opportunity to support the Museum by Gift Aiding the cost of admission.