An estimated 2.8 million Britons are members of a choir, new figures show.

A survey for charity Royal Voluntary Service found 58% of over-16-year-olds enjoy singing, with many joining others to indulge in their shared passion on a regular basis.

Nearly two-thirds of those asked (63%) said their love of music inspired them to sing, while TV shows such as The X Factor and The Voice are the reason behind 18% of people testing out the vocal cords.

The top three singing situations, according to the 3,017 people polled, are in the shower or bathroom (36%), while driving (33%) and while cooking (31%).

The research marks the launch of Sing Your Heart Out, a national campaign encouraging choirs to raise money for the charity through their love of singing and raise awareness of the benefits to mental and physical well being.

John Pearson, from Royal Voluntary Service, said: "Working with choirs and celebrating the power of singing was a natural choice for this campaign.

"Music and singing can have such a great impact on the life of an older person. We've seen this first hand through the work of our volunteers and how it can be a powerful tool when dealing with dementia, as well as simply lifting spirits.

"We're asking choirs to sing their hearts out and do it with pride for Royal Voluntary Service to help us reach out to older people who are in need of support. Every penny raised will help older people to live independent and fulfilled lives."