All the Number 1 albums of the 1980s

In honour of National Album Day 2020 which has an 80s theme, look back at the UK's chart-topping albums from the iconic decade.

October 10 marks National Album Day, the UK's leading initiative that celebrates the UK's enduring love for the album format, organised by the BPI in association with Bowers & Wilkins.

The theme for the third annual National Album Day is the Eighties, giving the nation a chance to reflect on their favourite albums from that iconic decade. For the first time ever, event-exclusive coloured vinyl reissues are hitting the high street to commemorate NAD, with records from the likes of Duran Duran, Meat Loaf and Cyndi Lauper up for grabs.

We're taking it back to the 80s too in celebration, looking back at every Number 1 album of the decade. Take a trip down memory lane below.

MORE: The biggest albums of every year since 1956

1980

1980 was a hugely successful year for ABBA. They started the year at Number 1 with Greatest Hits Volume 2, and their studio album Super Trouper was the year's best-selling album. It also spawned the two chart-topping singles The Winner Takes It All, and the title track. To top it all off Super Trouper was the year's Christmas Number 1 album and spent more weeks ruling the Official Albums Chart than any other album in 1980.

MORE: ABBA's greatest hits collection Gold is the longest-running Top 100 album ever

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
12/01/1980 GREATEST HITS VOLUME 2 ABBA 1
19/01/1980 PRETENDERS PRETENDERS 4
16/02/1980 THE LAST DANCE VARIOUS ARTISTS 2
01/03/1980 STRING OF HITS SHADOWS 3
22/03/1980 TEARS AND LAUGHTER JOHNNY MATHIS 2
05/04/1980 DUKE GENESIS 2
19/04/1980 GREATEST HITS ROSE ROYCE 2
03/05/1980 SKY 2 SKY 2
17/05/1980 THE MAGIC OF BONEY M BONEY M 2
31/05/1980 MCCARTNEY II PAUL MCCARTNEY 2
14/06/1980 PETER GABRIEL PETER GABRIEL 2
28/06/1980 FLESH AND BLOOD ROXY MUSIC 1
05/07/1980 EMOTIONAL RESCUE ROLLING STONES 2
19/07/1980 THE GAME QUEEN 2
02/08/1980 DEEPEST PURPLE DEEP PURPLE 1
09/08/1980 BACK IN BLACK AC/DC 2
23/08/1980 FLESH AND BLOOD ROXY MUSIC 3
13/09/1980 TELEKON GARY NUMAN 1
20/09/1980 NEVER FOR EVER KATE BUSH 1
27/09/1980 SCARY MONSTERS AND SUPER CREEPS DAVID BOWIE 2
11/10/1980 ZENYATTA MONDATTA POLICE 4
08/11/1980 GUILTY BARBRA STREISAND 2
22/11/1980 SUPER TROUPER ABBA 9

1981

1981 saw huge Number 1 albums from the likes of Phil Collins, The Human League and The Police, but it was Adam & The Ants who dominated. Their second album Kings of the Wild Frontier shifted the most copies that year, spent 12 weeks at Number 1 and spawned three UK Top 5 singles.

The year also saw the release of Queen's Greatest Hits. Spending a respectable four consecutive weeks at Number 1, the album would go on to become the UK's best-selling of all time.

MORE: 50 incredible Official Chart facts about Queen

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
24/01/1981 KINGS OF THE WILD FRONTIER ADAM & THE ANTS 2
07/02/1981 DOUBLE FANTASY JOHN LENNON & YOKO ONO 2
21/02/1981 FACE VALUE PHIL COLLINS 3
14/03/1981 KINGS OF THE WILD FRONTIER ADAM & THE ANTS 10
23/05/1981 STARS ON 45 STAR SOUND 5
27/06/1981 NO SLEEP TILL HAMMERSMITH MOTORHEAD 1
04/07/1981 DISCO DAZE AND DISCO NITES VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
11/07/1981 LOVE SONGS CLIFF RICHARD 5
15/08/1981 THE OFFICIAL BBC ALBUM OF THE ROYAL WEDDING VARIOUS ARTISTS 2
29/08/1981 TIME ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA 2
12/09/1981 DEAD RINGER MEAT LOAF 2
26/09/1981 ABACAB GENESIS 2
10/10/1981 GHOST IN THE MACHINE POLICE 3
31/10/1981 DARE! HUMAN LEAGUE 1
07/11/1981 SHAKY SHAKIN' STEVENS 1
14/11/1981 GREATEST HITS QUEEN 4
12/12/1981 CHART HITS '81 VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
19/12/1981 THE VISITORS ABBA 3

1982

The Human League kicked off the year by returning to Number 1 after they captured 1981's Christmas Number 1 single Don't You Want Me. Barbra Streisand picked up the year's biggest album with nine-week chart-topper Love Songs.

MORE: The female solo artists with the most UK Number 1 albums

However when it comes to longevity, The Kids From Fame ruled the roost for 12 non-consecutive weeks with their self-titled album, and as the famous Irene Cara song from the accompanying Fame film goes, those kids are "gonna live forever" in chart history.

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
09/01/1982 DARE! HUMAN LEAGUE 3
30/01/1982 LOVE SONGS BARBRA STREISAND 7
20/03/1982 THE GIFT JAM 1
27/03/1982 LOVE SONGS BARBRA STREISAND 2
10/04/1982 THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST IRON MAIDEN 2
24/04/1982 1982 STATUS QUO 1
01/05/1982 BARRY LIVE IN BRITAIN BARRY MANILOW 1
08/05/1982 TUG OF WAR PAUL MCCARTNEY 2
22/05/1982 COMPLETE MADNESS MADNESS 2
05/06/1982 AVALON ROXY MUSIC 1
12/06/1982 COMPLETE MADNESS MADNESS 1
19/06/1982 AVALON ROXY MUSIC 2
03/07/1982 THE LEXICON OF LOVE ABC 4
24/07/1982 FAME ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK 2
07/08/1982 THE KIDS FROM FAME KIDS FROM FAME 8
02/10/1982 LOVE OVER GOLD DIRE STRAITS 4
30/10/1982 THE KIDS FROM FAME KIDS FROM FAME 4
27/11/1982 THE SINGLES - THE FIRST TEN YEARS ABBA 1
04/12/1982 THE JOHN LENNON COLLECTION JOHN LENNON 6

1983

Unbelievably debuting at only Number 29 on the Official Albums Chart in November 1982, it wasn't long before Michael Jackson's Thriller took the world by storm with its second single Billie Jean and third single Beat It. Thriller is the seventh best-selling album of all-time in the UK, reaching sales of 4.4 million.

MORE: Artists with the most Top 10 singles in the UK

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
15/01/1983 RAIDERS OF THE POP CHARTS VARIOUS ARTISTS 2
29/01/1983 BUSINESS AS USUAL MEN AT WORK 5
05/03/1983 THRILLER MICHAEL JACKSON 1
12/03/1983 WAR U2 1
19/03/1983 THRILLER MICHAEL JACKSON 1
26/03/1983 THE HURTING TEARS FOR FEARS 1
02/04/1983 THE FINAL CUT PINK FLOYD 2
16/04/1983 FASTER THAN THE SPEED OF NIGHT BONNIE TYLER 1
23/04/1983 LET'S DANCE DAVID BOWIE 3
14/05/1983 TRUE SPANDAU BALLET 1
21/05/1983 THRILLER MICHAEL JACKSON 5
25/06/1983 SYNCHRONICITY POLICE 2
09/07/1983 FANTASTIC! WHAM! 2
23/07/1983 YOU AND ME BOTH YAZOO 2
06/08/1983 THE VERY BEST OF THE BEACH BOYS BEACH BOYS 2
20/08/1983 18 GREATEST HITS MICHAEL JACKSON PLUS THE JACKSON FIVE 3
10/09/1983 THE VERY BEST OF THE BEACH BOYS BEACH BOYS 1
17/09/1983 NO PARLEZ PAUL YOUNG 1
24/09/1983 LABOUR OF LOVE UB40 1
01/10/1983 NO PARLEZ PAUL YOUNG 2
15/10/1983 GENESIS GENESIS 1
22/10/1983 COLOUR BY NUMBERS CULTURE CLUB 3
12/11/1983 CAN'T SLOW DOWN LIONEL RICHIE 1
19/11/1983 COLOUR BY NUMBERS CULTURE CLUB 2
03/12/1983 SEVEN AND THE RAGGED TIGER DURAN DURAN 1
10/12/1983 NO PARLEZ PAUL YOUNG 1
17/12/1983 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC VARIOUS ARTISTS 4

1984

Bob Marley & The Wailers' greatest hits Legend spent a whopping 12 weeks at Number 1 in 1984, and has gone on to become the album with the second-most weeks ever accumulated in the Official Albums Chart, with over 900 logged in the Top 100.

And while Legend's tenure at the top was long, it wasn't 1984's biggest album. Sales wise Lionel Richie came out on top with Can't Slow Down. The two-week chart-topper features the Top 10 singles All Night Long (All Night), Running with the Night and Number 1 smash Hello.

MORE: Official Charts' Pop Genius Quiz: The Eighties

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
14/01/1984 NO PARLEZ PAUL YOUNG 1
21/01/1984 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
28/01/1984 THRILLER MICHAEL JACKSON 1
04/02/1984 TOUCH EURYTHMICS 2
18/02/1984 SPARKLE IN THE RAIN SIMPLE MINDS 1
25/02/1984 INTO THE GAP THOMPSON TWINS 3
17/03/1984 HUMAN'S LIB HOWARD JONES 2
31/03/1984 CAN'T SLOW DOWN LIONEL RICHIE 2
14/04/1984 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC II VARIOUS ARTISTS 5
19/05/1984 LEGEND - THE BEST OF BOB MARLEY & THE WAILERS BOB MARLEY & THE WAILERS 12
11/08/1984 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 3 VARIOUS ARTISTS 8
06/10/1984 TONIGHT DAVID BOWIE 1
13/10/1984 THE UNFORGETTABLE FIRE U2 2
27/10/1984 STEELTOWN BIG COUNTRY 1
03/11/1984 GIVE MY REGARDS TO BROAD STREET (OST) PAUL MCCARTNEY 1
10/11/1984 WELCOME TO THE PLEASUREDOME FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD 1
17/11/1984 MAKE IT BIG WHAM! 2
01/12/1984 THE HITS ALBUM/THE HITS TAPE - 32 ORIGINAL HITS VARIOUS ARTISTS 7

1985

Before they had their own chart, multiple artist compilations were allowed on the Official Albums Chart, and they were all the rage in 1985, with The Hits Album 2 spending six weeks at Number 1, and NOW That's What I Call Music! 5 tallying five weeks on top.

MORE: Every Number 1 album by a female solo artist

Close behind them with four weeks at Number 1 was Dire Straits' Brothers in Arms. It topped the charts in April and returned to the top in August, making it a mainstay seller for much of the year. Its success ran into 1986 too, when it spent even more time at the top - 10 weeks from January through March.

1985 also saw seminal albums from the likes of Kate Bush and Bruce Springsteen reach the helm of the Official Albums Chart.

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
19/01/1985 ALF ALISON MOYET 1
26/01/1985 AGENT PROVOCATEUR FOREIGNER 3
16/02/1985 BORN IN THE U.S.A. BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN 1
23/02/1985 MEAT IS MURDER SMITHS 1
02/03/1985 NO JACKET REQUIRED PHIL COLLINS 5
06/04/1985 THE SECRET OF ASSOCIATION PAUL YOUNG 1
13/04/1985 THE HITS ALBUM 2/THE HITS TAPE 2 VARIOUS ARTISTS 6
25/05/1985 BROTHERS IN ARMS DIRE STRAITS 2
08/06/1985 OUR FAVOURITE SHOP STYLE COUNCIL 1
15/06/1985 BOYS AND GIRLS BRYAN FERRY 2
29/06/1985 MISPLACED CHILDHOOD MARILLION 1
06/07/1985 BORN IN THE U.S.A. BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN 4
03/08/1985 BROTHERS IN ARMS DIRE STRAITS 2
17/08/1985 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 5 VARIOUS ARTISTS 5
21/09/1985 LIKE A VIRGIN MADONNA 1
28/09/1985 HOUNDS OF LOVE KATE BUSH 2
12/10/1985 LIKE A VIRGIN MADONNA 1
19/10/1985 HOUNDS OF LOVE KATE BUSH 1
26/10/1985 THE LOVE SONGS GEORGE BENSON 1
02/11/1985 ONCE UPON A TIME SIMPLE MINDS 1
09/11/1985 THE LOVE SONGS GEORGE BENSON 1
16/11/1985 PROMISE SADE 2
30/11/1985 THE GREATEST HITS OF 1985 VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
07/12/1985 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 6 VARIOUS ARTISTS 2
21/12/1985 NOW - THE CHRISTMAS ALBUM VARIOUS ARTISTS 2

1986

The classic stop-motion music video for Peter Gabriel's Sledgehammer was *everywhere* in 1986, resulting in his most successful album So topping the chart for two weeks.

The best-seller of the year was Madonna's True Blue, her third album that saw Madonna shoot into the realms of superstardom that her previous album Like A Virgin had cemented. True Blue spent six weeks leading the pack and spawned three Number 1 singles Papa Don't Preach, True Blue and Isla Bonita.

MORE: 60 incredible chart facts and feats about Madonna

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
04/01/1986 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 6 VARIOUS ARTISTS 2
18/01/1986 BROTHERS IN ARMS DIRE STRAITS 10
29/03/1986 HITS 4 VARIOUS ARTISTS 4
26/04/1986 STREET LIFE - 20 GREAT HITS BRYAN FERRY & ROXY MUSIC 5
31/05/1986 SO PETER GABRIEL 2
14/06/1986 A KIND OF MAGIC QUEEN 1
21/06/1986 INVISIBLE TOUCH GENESIS 3
12/07/1986 TRUE BLUE MADONNA 6
23/08/1986 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 7 VARIOUS ARTISTS 5
27/09/1986 SILK AND STEEL FIVE STAR 1
04/10/1986 GRACELAND PAUL SIMON 5
08/11/1986 EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE - THE SINGLES POLICE 2
22/11/1986 HITS 5 VARIOUS ARTISTS 2
06/12/1986 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 8 VARIOUS ARTISTS 6

1987

1987 saw Whitney Houston come into her own, with her self-titled spending six weeks at Number 1. Featuring classics like chart topper I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me) and So Emotional, how could it not?!

How to top Thriller was surely a dilemma for Michael Jackson, and in some ways he did so with Bad. Much like Thriller, it was a best-selling release of the year, and while his previous set spent longer at Number 1, Bad produced more Top 10 hits than its predecessor, and is one of just eight studio albums to feature seven or more UK Top 10 singles.

MORE: Every Number 1 album in UK chart history

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
17/01/1987 THE WHOLE STORY KATE BUSH 2
31/01/1987 GRACELAND PAUL SIMON 3
21/02/1987 THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA LONDON STAGE CAST 3
14/03/1987 THE VERY BEST OF HOT CHOCOLATE HOT CHOCOLATE 1
21/03/1987 THE JOSHUA TREE U2 2
04/04/1987 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 9 VARIOUS ARTISTS 5
09/05/1987 KEEP YOUR DISTANCE CURIOSITY KILLED THE CAT 2
23/05/1987 IT'S BETTER TO TRAVEL SWING OUT SISTER 2
06/06/1987 LIVE IN THE CITY OF LIGHT SIMPLE MINDS 1
13/06/1987 WHITNEY WHITNEY HOUSTON 6
25/07/1987 INTRODUCING THE HARDLINE ACCORDING TO TERENCE TRENT D'ARBY TERENCE TRENT D'ARBY 1
01/08/1987 HITS 6 VARIOUS ARTISTS 4
29/08/1987 HYSTERIA DEF LEPPARD 1
05/09/1987 HITS 6 VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
12/09/1987 BAD MICHAEL JACKSON 5
17/10/1987 TUNNEL OF LOVE BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN 1
24/10/1987 NOTHING LIKE THE SUN STING 1
31/10/1987 TANGO IN THE NIGHT FLEETWOOD MAC 2
14/11/1987 FAITH GEORGE MICHAEL 1
21/11/1987 BRIDGE OF SPIES T'PAU 1
28/11/1987 WHENEVER YOU NEED SOMEBODY RICK ASTLEY 1
05/12/1987 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 10 VARIOUS ARTISTS 6

1988

Kylie Minogue arrived on the scene and she did so in style, bagging 1988's best-selling album with her six-week Number 1 Kylie, which featured the four Top 2 singles. Over 30 years on, Kylie has had a chart-topping album in each of the last four decades.

MORE: The acts with the most Number 1s on the UK's Official Albums Chart

The longest-reigning Number 1 of the year was Terence Trent D'arby's debut album Introducing the Hardline According To... which logged eight weeks in pole position in 1988, and had also managed one week at the helm the previous year.

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
16/01/1988 POPPED IN SOULED OUT WET WET WET 1
23/01/1988 TURN BACK THE CLOCK JOHNNY HATES JAZZ 1
30/01/1988 INTRODUCING THE HARDLINE ACCORDING TO TERENCE TRENT D'ARBY TERENCE TRENT D'ARBY 8
26/03/1988 VIVA HATE MORRISSEY 1
02/04/1988 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 11 VARIOUS ARTISTS 3
23/04/1988 SEVENTH SON OF A SEVENTH SON IRON MAIDEN 1
30/04/1988 THE INNOCENTS ERASURE 1
07/05/1988 TANGO IN THE NIGHT FLEETWOOD MAC 2
21/05/1988 LOVESEXY PRINCE 1
28/05/1988 TANGO IN THE NIGHT FLEETWOOD MAC 1
04/06/1988 NITE FLITE VARIOUS ARTISTS 4
02/07/1988 TRACY CHAPMAN TRACY CHAPMAN 3
23/07/1988 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 12 VARIOUS ARTISTS 5
27/08/1988 KYLIE KYLIE MINOGUE 4
24/09/1988 HOT CITY NIGHTS VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
01/10/1988 NEW JERSEY BON JOVI 2
15/10/1988 FLYING COLOURS CHRIS DE BURGH 1
22/10/1988 RATTLE AND HUM U2 1
29/10/1988 MONEY FOR NOTHING DIRE STRAITS 3
19/11/1988 KYLIE KYLIE MINOGUE 2
03/12/1988 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 13 VARIOUS ARTISTS 3
24/12/1988 PRIVATE COLLECTION 1979-1988 CLIFF RICHARD 2

1989

In the 1980s, there was no Kylie Minogue without Jason Donovan! Neighbours co-star Jason's debut album Ten Good Reasons featured a trio of UK Number 1 singles and was the best-seller of 1989.

Cuban-American singer Gloria Estefan spent six weeks at Number 1 with Cuts Both Ways, the most of any artist that year.

MORE: Every artist who has scored the Official UK Chart double

DATE TITLE ARTIST WKS AT NO.1
07/01/1989 NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 13 VARIOUS ARTISTS 1
14/01/1989 THE INNOCENTS ERASURE 1
21/01/1989 THE LEGENDARY ROY ORBISON ROY ORBISON 3
11/02/1989 TECHNIQUE NEW ORDER 1
18/02/1989 THE RAW AND THE COOKED FINE YOUNG CANNIBALS 1
25/02/1989 A NEW FLAME SIMPLY RED 4
25/03/1989 ANYTHING FOR YOU GLORIA ESTEFAN & MIAMI SOUND MACHINE 1
01/04/1989 LIKE A PRAYER MADONNA 2
15/04/1989 WHEN THE WORLD KNOWS YOUR NAME DEACON BLUE 2
29/04/1989 A NEW FLAME SIMPLY RED 1
06/05/1989 BLAST! HOLLY JOHNSON 1
13/05/1989 STREET FIGHTING YEARS SIMPLE MINDS 1
20/05/1989 TEN GOOD REASONS JASON DONOVAN 2
03/06/1989 THE MIRACLE QUEEN 1
10/06/1989 TEN GOOD REASONS JASON DONOVAN 2
24/06/1989 FLOWERS IN THE DIRT PAUL MCCARTNEY 1
01/07/1989 BATMAN (OST) PRINCE 1
08/07/1989 VELVETEEN TRANSVISION VAMP 1
15/07/1989 CLUB CLASSICS VOLUME ONE SOUL II SOUL 1
22/07/1989 A NEW FLAME SIMPLY RED 2
05/08/1989 CUTS BOTH WAYS GLORIA ESTEFAN 6
16/09/1989 ASPECTS OF LOVE LONDON STAGE CAST 1
23/09/1989 WE TOO ARE ONE EURYTHMICS 1
30/09/1989 FOREIGN AFFAIR TINA TURNER 1
07/10/1989 THE SEEDS OF LOVE TEARS FOR FEARS 1
14/10/1989 CROSSROADS TRACY CHAPMAN 1
21/10/1989 ENJOY YOURSELF KYLIE MINOGUE 1
28/10/1989 WILD! ERASURE 2
11/11/1989 THE ROAD TO HELL CHRIS REA 3
02/12/1989 ... BUT SERIOUSLY PHIL COLLINS 5