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Brits choose Princess Diana over Virgin Mary as ideal mum

But, in a ComRes poll commissioned by the Church of England and published ahead of Mothering Sunday, the majority (60 per cent) said there was no ideal mother.

Asked, 'Thinking of well-known mothers, either fictional or real, or from the past or present - what one person would you name as the ideal mother?', five per cent chose the mother of Prince William and Prince Harry.

The Virgin Mary came eighth on the list, with one per cent of the vote - behind 'my own mother', Mother Teresa, The Queen, Michelle Obama, Molly Weasley and Mary Poppins.

The survey, involving 2015 UK adults, also found that a third of people cited readily available support was the most important thing their mother had done for them.

Reacting to the findings, Rev Dr Sandra Millar, head of life events at the Church of England told Premier: It can feel like the pressure to do something material for them [children] is overwhelming but actually, in the long-term, when we look back at our parents, what we remember about our mums are those values [they taught]."

Teaching their child to do the right thing (18 per cent), illustrating the value of hard work (eleven per cent), providing for everything they need (eleven per cent) and being a positive role model (seven per cent) completed the top five.

Offering some advice to those for whom Mothering Sunday can be a difficult day, Dr Sandra added: "I haven't had a mum now for 14 years.

"I'm not a mother and sometimes it's really hard.

"A lot of churches have space in them; some of them will have the ability to put a prayer on a prayer tree or to light a candle.

"Just take that moment to reflect.

Click here to listen to Premier's Rosie Wright speaking with Rev Dr Sandra Millar:

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