The Very Best British Soap Operas, Ranked

List Rules
Vote up your favorite soaps from the UK.

Heightened drama and ridiculously long feuds keep viewers coming back for more in the best British soap operas. The top British soap opera shows tell ongoing stories about characters who would do anything for each other - and others who would betray their own families to get ahead. This is a list of the best British soap operas, including everything from Doctors to Take the High Road.

What series will you find on this list of the greatest British soap operas? EastEnders has been broadcast on BBC One since 1985, making it one of the longest-running British soaps. The show is set in the fictional borough of Walford, and features stories surrounding several members of the community. Miracles Take Longer is another popular British soap opera. Coronation Street has featured several amazing actors over the years, including Ben Kingsley and Ian McKellen. Other good British soap operas featured on this list include The Newcomers, Weavers Green, and Starr and Company.

Do you have a favorite English soap? Give the best series a thumbs up and get in on the conversation in the comments section.


Ranked by
  • Coronation Street
    Barbara Knox, Helen Worth, Kate Ford
    • Premiered: December 9, 1960
  • EastEnders
    Steve McFadden, Adam Woodyatt, Pam St. Clement
    • Premiered: 1985
  • Emmerdale
    Chris Chittell, Steve Halliwell, James Hooton
    • Premiered: October 16, 1972
  • Hollyoaks
    Jayden Fox, Tylan Grant, Stephanie Waring
    • Premiered: October 23, 1995
  • Brookside
    Anna Friel, Jennifer Ellison, Claire Sweeney
    • Premiered: 1982
  • Doctors
    Robert Cavanah, Ian Kelsey, Chris Walker
    • Premiered: 2000
  • Eldorado
    Ben Murphy, William Lucas, Derek Martin
    • Premiered: 1992
  • Take The High Road
    James Cosmo, Natalie J. Robb, Eileen McCallum
    • Premiered: 1980
  • Family Affairs
    Sasha Pieterse, Cyril Nri, Antony Booth
    • Premiered: March 30, 1997
  • River City
    Sam Heughan, Louise Jameson, Barbara Rafferty
    • Premiered: 2002
  • The Cut
    Samuell Benta, Matthew Kane, Lara Goodison
    • Premiered: 2009
  • United!
    David Lodge, Michael Billington, Finlay Currie
    • Premiered: 1965
  • Miracles Take Longer
    John Salthouse, Patsy Byrne
    • Premiered: 1984
  • 199 Park Lane
    John Barron, Edwin Richfield, Derek Bond
    • Premiered: 1965
  • The Grove Family
    Christopher Beeny, Ruth Dunning, Peter Bryant
    • Premiered: 1954
  • No image
    Marc Zuber, Zia Mohyeddin, Rula Lenska
    • Premiered: 1991
  • The Newcomers
    Wendy Richard, Judy Geeson, J. G. Devlin
    • Premiered: 1965
  • Castle Haven
    Gretchen Franklin, Kathy Staff, John Comer
    • Premiered: 1969
  • Weavers Green
    Kate O'Mara, John Moulder-Brown, Megs Jenkins
    • Premiered: 1966
  • Starr And Company
    Arnold Ridley, Philip Ray, George Roderick
    • Premiered: 1958