Society Magazine

N-ear Perfect- A Baby’s Laugh Voted Amongst Britain’s Favourite Sounds

Posted on the 28 August 2012 by 72point @72hub

Brits have voted the sound of a baby laughing amongst our favorite sounds, as a study of the nation’s best-loved sounds found that although babies push ahead on cuteness, Brits love nothing more than the noise of the sea – which topped the list of fifty.

The runner-up was the sound of rain lashing against the windows – something Brits have had plenty of chance to enjoy over the recent wash-out summer.

The study of 2,000 people also found that the sound of fireworks and bacon sizzling are a blessing on the ears.

The research, which was commissioned by Drayton Manor Theme Park, saw Brits vote treading on snow or crunchy leaves sit high in the list, while the glug of wine being poured is irresistible to many.

The cheerful screams of people on a rollercoaster, popping bubble wrap or piercing the foil on a new jar of coffee are also some of the nation’s best loved sounds.

The research also unveiled the most detested sounds;

  • The biggest torture for our ears is the sound of nails on a chalkboard, followed closely by people being sick or the constant shrill of a car alarm;
  • The sound of a dentist’s drill alone is enough to inspire fear in most people;
  • A dripping tap or squeaky shoe is bound to drive people mad, while no mercy is shown to anyone trying to learn the violin.

An overwhelming three quarters of people think sound is crucial in building a sense of atmosphere or excitement.

So much so that one in eight have queued for a rollercoaster and lost their nerve after hearing the screams of fellow riders.

Helen Pawley, General Manager at  Drayton Manor, said:

”We can often get so buried in our day-to-day lives that we don’t appreciate the little things in life, so it’s good to see that there are certain sounds we all enjoy.

”Many of the most popular noises aren’t just nice sounds in themselves, but evoke memories of good times or the anticipation of something good to come.

”Everyone has a memory of a day out or trip to the seaside which can be conjured up by certain sounds, while laughter, whether in adults or children clearly is infectious and good to see in the top ten.

”The things we hear build atmosphere and emotion as strongly as any other sense, and that shared sense of excitement that comes from a football match, theme park or stadium is a big part of any memorable experience.”


1.   Waves against rocks

2.   Rain against the windows

3.   Treading on snow

4.   Baby laughing

5.   Birds chirping

6.   Crackling open fire

7.   People laughing

8.   Leaves crunching beneath your feet

9.   Cat purring

10.   Church bells in the distance

11.   Thunder

12.   Wind passing through leaves of a tree

13.   Piano playing

14.   Owl hooting

15.   Bacon sizzling

16.   Sound of the sea in a conch shell

17.   Pouring wine

18.   Pebbles thrown into water

19.   Fireworks

20.   Choir singing

21.   Steam train whistle

22.   Popping a cork

23.   Electric guitar

24.   Bubble wrap popping

25.   Whale calling

26.   Fizzy drink poured on ice

27.   People laughing/screaming on rollercoasters

28.   Roar of a Ferrari engine

29.   Cricket bat hitting a cricket ball

30.   Bumblebee buzzing

31.   Piercing foil on a new jar of coffee

32.   Popping popcorn

33.   Violin

34.   Seagulls calling

35.   Crickets

36.   Fairground music

37.   Formula one car engine

38.   Arcade/amusement games

39.   Crunch of biting an apple

40.   Lawn mowers in the summer

41.   Clock ticking

42.   Opening of a fizzy can

43.   Cockerel calling

44.   Airplane taking off

45.   Underground train approaching

46.   Kettle boiling

47.   Crowds chanting at a football match

48.   Clatter of coins

49.   Tea spoon clinking

50.   Clapping


1.   Nails on a chalk board

2.   Someone being sick

3.   Car alarm

4.   A dentist’s drill

5.   Someone spitting

6.   A yapping dog

7.   Screaming baby/children

8.   Someone talking with their mouth full

9.   Someone grinding their teeth

10.   Someone’s knife grinding on a plate

11.   Dripping tap

12.   A chair scraping on the floor

13.   Car horns in traffic

14.   Screeching brakes

15.   Someone learning the violin

16.   Mobile ring tones

17.   People chewing gum

18.   A squeaky door

19.   An unanswered phone

20.   Someone blowing their nose


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