Over one-third of the population (34%) admitted to spending time working and accessing work-related emails remotely over the 2009-10 holiday period* – the equivalent of nearly 16m people. That’s according to new research released today by TalkTalk (www.talktalk.co.uk), the biggest provider of broadband to Britain’s homes.

On average, people spent a whopping three hours and 18 minutes working from home when they were supposed to be on holiday. And worryingly one in 10 people claimed they spent over 10 hours working from home.

Working from home when they should have been relaxing with the family was most apparent among 35-44 year olds, with almost half of those surveyed (47%) admitting to logging on over the holidays to check emails or spending time trawling the internet for work-related purposes.

Thankfully the festive break wasn’t just about work. As technology develops and viewing habits change, internet TV has become increasingly popular. One-fifth of people (20%) said they watched or downloaded TV from the internet during the holiday period this year, spending an average of two and a half hours doing so.

This compares to 28% who watched clips on YouTube and 19% who played online computer games. Meanwhile over half (57%) of Brits spent time emailing friends and family, and 40% visited social networking sites.

More than one in 10 of us (11%) made calls to friends and family via Skype, while only 3% of people said they accessed and updated their Twitter account over Christmas and New Year.

Mark Schmid from TalkTalk said: “As recently as 10 years ago most of our time over the festive period was spent with our nearest and dearest, or slumped in front of the telly. Now we’re spending big chunks of our Christmas time playing games online, watching TV over the internet or social networking. Now your Twitter followers know what you had in your stocking before you’ve even tucked in to your turkey!”