Eurovision Song Contest: Best and worst Brit acts

Are you a Eurovision fan? Test your British knowledge and reminisce about your favourite acts since 1975!

Joe and Jake, Eurovision

Will you be trying to get your hands on Eurovision tickets this March? If you're a fan, test your British knowledge and reminisce about your favourite acts since 1975!

Whether you love it or hate it, everyone has to admit that the Eurovision Song Contest, or Eurovision, has true staying power. It has been an annual occurrence on our TV screens since May 1956 and continues to be a continent-wide celebration of all things musical (for better or worse…).

Eurovision is well known (and loved) for the garish costumes, gaudy dance routines, frankly confusing sets, and, occasionally, even worse vocals, but everyone has their own reasons to tune in.

Most UK Eurovision entries - even winners - don't seem to go on to have a successful career in showbiz. Who could forget the 2003 UK entry Jemini, who nosedived into a total of nul points’ for their song Cry Baby? Or Finland’s winning entry in 2006 - heavy metal band Lordi, who wore monster outfits and sung Hard Rock Hallelujah?

But there have been some notable exceptions to the rule; ABBA, who won in Brighton in 1974 for their home nation of Sweden with worldwide hit Waterloo went on to build a career spanning several decades.

Then there was Bucks Fizz, winner in 1981 for the United Kingdom (the penultimate win before our most recent in 1997 for Katrina and the Waves) and of course Celine Dion, who won in 1988 for Switzerland and went on to have one of the most successful singing careers of her generation.

And most recently the UK set to host Eurovision 2023 on behalf of 2022 winners Ukraine, and the nation has high hopes for UK Eurovision entry Mae Muller.

Eurovision 2016: Joe and Jake

Song: You're Not Alone

UK position: TBC

Winner: TBC

Host city: Stockholm, Sweden

Fun fact: Joe and Jake, who are from Wales and Stoke-On-Trent respectively, both appeared in the fourth series of BBC talent show The Voice as solo artists. They only became a duo after they both left the show!

Eurovision 2015: Electro Velvet

Electro Velvet, Eurovision

Song: Still In Love With You

UK position: 24

Winner: Sweden

Host city: Vienna, Austria

Fun fact: The lady half of Electro Velvet, Bianca, has appeared on both The X Factor AND The Voice before!

Eurovision 2014: Molly

Molly, Eurovision

Song: Children of the Universe

UK position: 17

Winner: Austria

Host city: Copenhagen, Denmark

Fun fact: Prior to her Eurovision entry, Molly had already had a UK top ten hit with Raindrops, a collaboration with superstar DJ Sash!

Eurovision 2013: Bonnie Tyler

Bonnie Tyler, Eurovision

Song: Believe in Me

UK position: 19

Winner: Denmark

Host city: Malmö, Sweden

Fun fact: In a poll conducted by the Guardian, 46% of people believed Bonnie would bring home the win for the UK with her performance, but it wasn't meant to be.

Eurovision 2012: Englebert Humperdink

Englebert Humperdink, Eurovision

Song: Love Will Set You Free

UK position: 25

Winner: Sweden

Host city: Baku, Azerbaijan

Fun fact: Englebert opened the entire show with this tune, but sadly he seemed to have been forgotten by the end, scoring just 12 points.

Eurovision 2011: Blue

Eurovision 2011: Blue

Song: I Can

UK position: 11

Winner: Azerbaijan

Host city: Dusseldorf, Germany

Fun fact: Blue were up against X Factor contestants Jedward, who are representing Ireland!

Eurovision 2010: Josh Dubovie

Eurovision 2010

Song: That Sounds Good To Me

UK position: Last

Winner: Germany

Host city: Oslo, Norway

Fun fact: The UK ranks joint 2nd in its number of Eurovision victories (5) and has the highest cumulative points total of any country in the contest since it began in 1956.

Eurovision 2009: Jade Ewen

Eurovision 2009

Song: It's My Time

UK position: 5

Winner: Norway

Host city: Moscow, Russia

Fun fact: In a massive attempt to bring the UK Eurovision glory, Jade Ewen's song It's My Time was written by Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber who also flew to Russia to perform with her on stage. Jade's dress was designed by Amanda Wakeley and the Strictly Come Dancing judge Arlene Philips, hired to help choreograph the performance.

Eurovision 2008: Andy Abraham

Eurovision 2008

Song: Even If

UK position: 23

Winner: Russia

Host city: Belgrade, Serbia

Fun fact: Despite former X-Factor contestant Andy Abraham having high hopes for the song Even If, he came joint second to last with Poland. having received only 14 points - the second worst act of the 2000s.

Eurovision 2007: Scooch

Eurovision 2007

Song: Flying The Flag (for You)

UK position: 23

Winner: Serbia

Host city: Helsinki, Finland

Fun fact: Despite reaching number five in the charts, Scooch managed a dismal second-to-last finish at the 2007 Eurovision contest after receiving only 19 points.

Eurovision 2006: Daz Sampson

Eurovision 2006

Song: Teenage Life

UK position: 19

Winner: Finland

Host city: Athens, Greece

Fun fact: In 2006, the contest was won by a Finnish death metal group called Lordi, who grunted through Hard Rock Hallelujah in monster masks and exploded fireworks as a distraction measure.

Eurovision 2005: Javine Hylton

Eurovision 2005

Song: Touch My Fire

UK position: 22

Winner: Greece

Host city: Kiev, Ukraine

Fun fact: After failing to make the band in Popstars: The Rivals, Javine went on to represent the UK in 2005 after beating Katie Price in a public vote. Javine however only received 18 points and finished near the bottom of the table.

Eurovision 2004: James Fox

Eurovision 2004

Song: Hold On To Our Love

UK position: 16

Winner: Ukraine

Host city: Istanbul, Turkey

Fun fact: Ukraine's win in 2004 was only their second participation in the contest's history. It was also the third year in a row which the contest was won by a woman.

Eurovision 2003: Jemini

Eurovision 2003

Song: Cry Baby

UK position: 26 (last)

Winner: Turkey

Host city: Riga, Latvia

Fun fact: In 2003, Jemini became the first UK act to receive the dreaded 'nul points'. With 26 countries competing (the highest number at this point), this also made the duo the least successful entry in the history of the contest.

Eurovision 2002: Jessica Garlick

Eurovision 2002

Song: Come Back

UK position: 3

Winner: Latvia

Host city: Tallinn, Estonia

Fun fact: X Factor hopeful, Jessica Garlick, received 111 points at the close of the 2002 voting, coming joint third place with host country Estonia. This was the best result for the UK since 1998 and the best result for the UK in the 2000s.

Eurovision 2001: Lindsay

Eurovision 2001

Song: No Dream Impossible

UK position: 15

Winner: Estonia

Host city: Copenhagen, Denmark

Fun fact: The Eurovision Song contest is one of the most-watched single events in the world. In 2001, 95% of the Danish viewing public tuned in - the highest percentage in Europe.

Eurovision 2000: Nicki French

Eurovision 2000

Song: Don't Play That Song Again

UK position: 16

Winner: Denmark

Host city: Stockholm, Sweden

Fun fact: In 2000 it was decided that the four countries that made the biggest financial contributions to the European Broadcasting Union would automatically qualify each year - these are the UK, Germany, France and Spain.

Eurovision 1999: Precious

Eurovision 1999

Song: Say It Again

UK position: 12

Winner: Sweden

Host city: Jerusalem, Israel

Fun fact: Precious had limited success after a poor performance at the 1999 contest. After they split just a year later, Jenny Frost joined Atomic Kitten to replace the outgoing Kerry Katona.

Eurovision 1998: Imaani

Eurovision 1998

Song: Where Are You?

UK position: 2

Winner: Israel

Host city: Birmingham, United Kingdom

Fun fact: The UK has hosted the Eurovision song contest eight times, which is more than any other country.

Eurovision 1997: Katrina and the Waves

Eurovision 1997

Song: Love Shine A Light

UK position: 1 - hooray!

Winner: United Kingdom

Host city: Dublin, Ireland

Fun fact: In 1997 the UK receved the most number of top marks ever awarded to one song in the contest's history. They held this record for eight years.

Eurovision 1996: Gina G

Eurovision 1996

Song: Ooh Aah...Just A Little Bit

UK position: 8

Winner: Ireland

Host city: Oslo, Norway

Fun fact: The mini-dress of chain linked gold discs worn by Gina G in 1996 had originally been designed for Cher by American designer Paco Rabanne. After Gina acquired it, she cut the full-length gown to its now infamous thigh skimming size.

Eurovision 1995: Love City Groove

Eurovision 1995

Song: Love City Groove

UK position: 10

Winner: Norway

Host city: Dublin, Ireland

Fun fact: 1995 was Ireland's third year in succession to host the contest, however after financial worries, Ireland asked the European Broadcasting Union, should they win once more, they would not be expected to host the event a fourth year in a row.

Eurovision 1994: Frances Ruffelle

Eurovision 1994

Song: Lonely Symphone (We Will Be Free)

UK position: 10

Winner: Ireland

Host city: Dublin, Ireland

Fun fact: In 1994 the world famous Irish dance show Riverdance made its debut as a seven minute interval act. It was the first time any act in the Eurovision received a standing ovation.

Eurovision 1993: Sonia

Eurovision 1993

Song: Better the Devil You Know

UK position: 2

Winner: Ireland

Host city: Millstreet, Ireland

Fun fact: Terry Wogan provided BBC TV commentary for the Eurovision Song contest every year from 1980-2008. He was replaced in 2009 with Graham Norton.

Eurovision 1992: Michael Ball

Eurovision 1992

Song: One Step Out of Time

UK position: 2

Winner: Ireland

Host city: Malmo, Sweden

Fun fact: Ireland has recorded the most number of wins at Eurovision. A total of eight wins in 1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996.

Eurovision 1991: Samantha Janus

Eurovision 1991

Song: A Message to Your Heart

UK position: 10

Winner: Sweden

Host city: Rome, Italy

Fun fact: The two presenters of the 1991 Eurovision were previous Italian winners, however, nobody had asked them if they could speak English, as a consequence the entire contest was presented in Italian which meant most of the viewers didn't have a clue what they were saying.

Eurovision 1990: Emma

Eurovision 1990

Song: Give a Little Love Back to the World

UK position: 6

Winner: Italy

Host city: Zagreb, Yugoslavia

Fun fact: An age rule was implemented at the 1990 Eurovision contest after criticism arose over the ages of two performers at previous year's contest, being just 11 and 12-years-old on the day of the contest. From 1990, no artist under the age of 16 on the day of the contest could perform on stage.

Eurovision 1989: Live Report

Eurovision 1989

Song: Why Do I Always Get It Wrong

UK position: 2

Winner: Yugoslavia

Host city: Lausanne, Switzerland

Fun fact: Live Report's lead singer Ray Caruana was outspoken about coming second to what he considered a much less worthy song. The UK was beaten by only seven points.

Eurovision 1988: Scott Fitzgerald

Eurovision 1988

Song: Go

UK position: 2

Winner: Switzerland

Host city: Dublin, Ireland

Fun fact: The 1998 UK entry 'Go' performed by Scott Fitzgerald, was written by Bruce Forsyth's daughter. It came second by a single point on the final vote to Celina Dion, who was representing Switzerland.

Eurovision 1987: Rikki

Eurovision 1987

Song: Only the Light

UK position: 13

Winner: Ireland

Host city: Brussels, Belgium

Fun fact: This was the second time Johnny Logan had won the Eurovision contest for Ireland, having done so with What's Another Year in 1980.

Eurovision 1986: Ryder

Eurovision 1986

Song: Runner in the Night

UK position: 7

Winner: Belgium

Host city: Bergen, Norway

Fun fact: This year saw the youngest ever winner of the Eurovision Song contest was 13-year-old Sandra Kim from Belgium.

Eurovision 1985: Vikki Watson

Eurovision 1985

Song: Love Is

UK position: 4

Winner: Norway

Host city: Gothenburg, Sweden

Fun fact: Despite winning this year as well as 1985 and 1995, Norway holds the unfortunate distinction of having scored the most 'nul points' in competition history (four times).

Eurovision 1984: Belle and the Devotions

Eurovision 1984

Song: Love Games

UK position: 7

Winner: Sweden

Host city: Luxembourg

Fun fact: 1984 was the first time a song performed in Swedish won.

Eurovision 1983: Sweet Dreams

Eurovision 1983

Song: I'm Never Giving Up

UK position: 6

Winner: Luxembourg

Host city: Munich, Germany

Fun fact: The 1983 Turkey Eurovision entry, 'Opera' consisted entirely of the world 'Opera' being repeated over and over while Spain's 'La La La' contained no fewer that 138 'la's'.

Eurovision 1982: Bardo

Eurovision 1982

Song: One Step Further

UK position: 7

Winner: Germany

Host city: Harrogate, United Kingdom

Fun fact: 1982 was the only time Germany has won the Eurovision Song contest despite competing every year but one since the contest began.

Eurovision 1981: Bucks Fizz

Eurovision 1981

Song: Making Your Mind Up

UK position: 1

Winner: United Kingdom

Host city: Dublin, Ireland

Fun fact: We all remember this one! Italy boycotted the 1981 Eurovision Song contest, saying that it was too old fashioned.

Eurovision 1980: Prima Donna

Eurovision 1980

Song: Love Enough for Two

UK position: 3

Winner: Ireland

Host city: The Hague, Netherlands

Fun fact: Despite winning (and hosting) the year before, Israel declined to host the Eurovision contest for a second time in a row due to lack of funding.

Eurovision 1979: Black Lace

Eurovision 1979

Song: Mary Ann
UK position:


Winner: Israel

Host city: Jerusalem, Israel

Fun fact: Shortly after the Eurovision contest, Black Lace relased the song Mary Ann into the charts. It peaked at number 42, one of the lowest positions for any Eurovision entry at the time.

Eurovision 1978: Co-Co

Eurovision 1978

Song: The Bad Old Days

UK position: 11

Winner: Israel

Host city: Paris, France

Fun fact: In 1978 Norway became the first country to receive 'nul points' for their entry, Mil Etter Mil (Mile after Mile).

Eurovision 1977: Lynsey de Paul & Mike Moran

Eurovision 1977

Song: Rock Bottom

UK position: 2

Winner: France

Host city: London, United Kingdom

Fun fact: Lynsey de Paul & Mike Moran's song Rock Bottom charted in several European countries after the Eurovision Song contest, eventually topping the charts in Switzerland.

Eurovision 1976: Brotherhood of Man

Eurovision 1976

Song: Save Your Kisses for Me

UK position: 1

Winner: United Kingdom

Host city: The Hague, Netherlands

Fun fact: In 1976 the UK received 164 points from 17 countries, which gave us an average of 9.64 points per country. This remains the record and is unlikely to be broken due to the number of countries who can now vote.

Eurovision 1975: The Shadows

Eurovision 1975

Song: Let Me Be The One.

UK position: 2

Winner: Netherlands

Host city: Stockholm, Sweden

Fun fact: Since 1975 the UK has given the most points to Ireland (187) and received the most points from Austria (167).


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