Formal dinner parties are making a comeback and we’re pushing the boat out with old-school delights including prawn cocktails The 1970s classic topped a poll for the ideal three-course meal, to be followed by roast lamb with dauphinoise potatoes and homemade cheesecake.

More than half those quizzed say they have swapped casual TV suppers for a retro soiree.

White tablecloths, ice buckets, silverware, cocktail shakers, wine decanters and drinks trollies are all being dusted off to add some ritz.

So too are our “best” table mats, along with candles and fresh flowers. A fifth of hosts even set a dress code – with nearly three-quarters of those polled by TX Maxx and Homesense admitting they are glad to get their glad rags on.

We will entertain friends and family five times this year, taking three hours to decorate the house, get dressed and prepare food for each bash.

Four in 10 will create a seating plan, while a tenth say their bashes are so swish they’re a proper “event”.

TK Maxx said: “It is great people are keen to make them something special.”

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