Actress Sheridan Smith is to voice a new series of stories, based on iconic TV, film and sport locations, in a bid to soothe people to sleep.

Streaming service NOW has teamed up with The Sleep Charity to create the sleep stories, with the Gavin and Stacey star using her smooth tones to help people nod off.

The stories will transport listeners to landscapes from their favourite TV shows, films and sports, from the glistening glaciers of Game of Thrones to the sparkling Mediterranean Sea in Riviera and even the start of a new football season back on home turf.

It comes after a study of 2,000 adults found more than two in five are struggling with sleeplessness – with anxiety over the lifting of lockdown restriction adding to their troubles.

As a result, one in three have actively searched for ways to sleep more soundly, with the average Brit trying up to four new remedies over the last 12 months.

Exploring calming bed-time stories (27 per cent) and meditation (26 per cent) were some of the most favoured methods, followed by switching up the side of the bed they sleep on (19 per cent).

Seven in 10 also admitted to turning to their TV for escape in the last 12 months with 67 per cent claiming it’s been a huge source of comfort.

Sheridan Smith said: “I know it’s been a tough year, and the last thing we need is a bad night’s sleep.

“I can’t wait to be the voice that soothes you to dreamland – I’m truly honoured to join you all in your bedrooms – I hope you enjoy these enigmatic stories.

”The study also found that more than a quarter (26 per cent) of adults have been kept awake at night because they were deliberating whether to socialise in big groups."

Others have lain awake worrying about the uncertainty over the rules (27 per cent) and which six friends to invite to events (19 per cent).

Brits find softly spoken accents most soothing (21 per cent) while a relatable tone (15 per cent) and female voice (13 per cent) are the most likely to soothe to sleep.

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