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'Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead' closer to number one spot as it reaches top five following Margaret Thatcher's death

  • @adamsherwin10

Lady Thatcher’s death could propel The Wizard Of Oz track "Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead to the top of the charts.

Those who saw her death as a cause for celebration have prompted a download surge for the track.

Within 48 hours of the former Prime Minister’s death, the song has entered the official UK chart at number 10.

It is expected to climb higher as a result of a Facebook campaign being set up to encourage sales.

The Facebook group, encouraging people to download the "Witch" song to get it to number one, already had 664 members and was originally set up back in July 2007.

The BBC said it would decide whether to play Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead during Radio 1's top 40 countdown when places are finalised this weekend.

In a statement it said: "The Official Chart Show on Sunday is a historical and factual account of what the British public has been buying and we will make a decision about playing it when the final chart positions are clear."

The song was written by EY Harburg and composed by Harold Arlen and featured in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz.

A song specifically written to attack Lady Thatcher, "Tramp The Dirt Down" by Elvis Costello, also rose to 79 on the iTunes chart.

Respect MP George Galloway tweeted the title of the 1988 song, which includes the lyrics: “When they finally put you in the ground, they’ll stand there laughing and tramp the dirt down.”

Entrepreneurial fashion outlets were quick to cash in on the death. One boutique in Shoreditch, east London, placed T-shirts featuring Warhol-style portraits of Lady Thatcher in its window.

The Redbubble online clothing store was selling black and white T-shirts featuring a stark portrait of the politician with the word “DEAD” below, for £15.

However there appears to be a limit to the public appetite for all things Thatcher-related. A peak-time BBC1 90-minute obituary, narrated by Andrew Marr and broadcast on Monday night, attracted fewer than 3 million viewers. News bulletins providing blanket coverage of the death failed to record a viewing rise.

Britain’s first female Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher died at the Ritz hotel in London on Monday following a stroke. She was 87.