Is technology to blame for the demise of the dinner table?

Is the traditional family mealtime a thing of the past?

Is the traditional family mealtime a thing of the past?

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Technology seems to be winning over traditional family activities, with the family dinner most at risk according to a new survey.

More than half of British parents have revealed that they once planned to continue family traditions and habits, but over time technology and busy lifestyles have taken over.

According to the poll, conducted by home interiors specialist www.hillarys.co.uk, families prefer to sit in front of the television or a computer screen rather than round the table together.

Bedtime stories to children are also more likely to be replaced by technology, as parents struggle to incorporate such traditions into modern day life.

While 53 per cent of respondents said they had planned to carry on their family’s traditions with their children, 27 per cent said they had not while 20 per cent said they had and had succeeded.

All parents who said that they had not managed to carry on family traditions and habits either blamed technology for taking over or said that there were incompatible with their families and lifestyle.

The top five activities which have slipped in popularity are: Eating around the dinner table - 73 per cent, bedtime stories - 55 per cent, travelling games, such as in the car - 43 per cent, family movie night - 25 per cent, family board game night - 21 per cent.

Of those who said technology has replaced eating around the dinner table, 57 per cent confessed that their families now sit together in front of the television, while the remaining 43 per cent confessed that their families go into separate rooms in order to watch different programmes on the television or computer.

The top traditions that had been maintained were weekly meals such as Sunday roasts and fish supper Fridays’ and attending church.

Tara Hall, spokeswoman for www.hillarys.co.uk, said: “Technology is an important part of our lives, but so is spending time with our families, talking, playing and making memories.”