Shane MacGowan’s wife Victoria Mary Clarke has said she hopes the festive anthem Fairytale of New York will be the UK’s Christmas number one in memory of the late Pogues frontman.

Although the track was released in 1987, it has only ever made it to number two.

Shane, 65, died “peacefully” on Thursday (November 30) with his family by his side.

The Irish singer had recently been discharged from hospital after receiving treatment for an infection.

He previously revealed he was diagnosed with encephalitis last year in a video posted to social media on New Year’s Eve.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Victoria said she was "very much in favour" of the famous song featuring Kirsty MacColl making the top spot.

"It would be nice, wouldn't it?" she added. "It should be the Christmas number one. It absolutely should."

Thanks to streaming, music fans have taken it back to the top 10 every Christmas for the past six years, reports the BBC.

It’s said to now be climbing the chart once more and is currently at number 18 in this week's chart.

Shane MacGowan’s wife says 'we were both very much affected by his addiction'

Elsewhere on the Radio 4 show, Victoria compared Fairytale of New York's love story to her marriage with Shane.

She explained: “It's not [the romance that's] gone wrong - in the song, they still love each other.

"But life has gone wrong. I think that's what's probably a little bit similar to our story.

"We were both very much affected by his addiction, but you can still love, even when you're in that situation. And you can be very desperately unhappy as well as love."

Announcing his death, a statement posted on behalf of Victoria, Shane's sister, Siobhan, and father, Maurice, on The Pogues’ official Instagram account said: “It is with the deepest sorrow and heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of Shane MacGowan.

“Shane died peacefully at 3am this morning (30 November, 2023) with his wife Victoria and family by his side.

“Prayers and the last rites were read which gave comfort to his family.

“He is survived by his wife Victoria, his sister Siobhan and his father Maurice, family and a large circle of friends.”