London: Believe it or not, emotional Britons crave for up to 13 hugs a day.    

A new study has found that Britons typically devote 9.5 seconds to every embrace and spend an hour a month hugging. And despite spending so much time in physical contact, 41 percent of them say they want even more hugs.
   
The study, based on a survey, found that 69 percent of Britons turn to their partners when they want a hug while 14 percent head for a close friend and nine per cent look for a hug from their mother.
   
Given the chance to hug anyone, it seems Britons would cuddle footballer David Beckham, followed by Hollywood heart -throb George Clooney, and even actor Robbie Williams.
   
The most huggable woman is 'This Morning' show presenter Holly Willoughby followed by Cheryl Cole, Lorraine Kelly, Kate Middleton and Nigella Lawson, according to skin cream maker Nivea which carried out the research.
   
But, hugging has nothing to do with feeling amorous.
   
More than a third of Britons seek one because they feel the need to be comforted. They also find a hug as reassurance or a boost after a hard day at work.
   
The survey found that women are much more likely than men to ask for a hug when they are feeling down although, a third of those questioned in the survey admitted they were not comfortable with physical contact.
   
One in seven said public displays of affection were inappropriate and nearly a third felt that hugging in the workplace should be avoided. This sentiment may explain why Britain's favourite hug is the "handshake and lean".

(Agencies)