Consumer spending on magazines in the UK topped £2 billion ($3.61bn; £2.92bn)last year.

Figures from The Advertising Statistics Yearbook 2005, published for the Advertising Association by WARC, show expenditure increased by £54 million, compared with 2003, to £2.03bn.

Magazines have seen consumer spend rise by 34% through the past decade, despite competition from the internet and multichannel television.

The total annual volume of magazines sold in Britain has grown for the fourth year running. Total sales rose by 14 million copies in 2004 to 1,339m.

The increase was most marked in weeklies, followed by a smaller rise in the number of fortnightly magazines sold. Monthlies were less successful, with a fall in sales of 22m to 329m.

Says Ian Locks, ceo of the Periodical Publishers Association: "For this growth to have continued during such an amazing time of change for the media as a whole is particularly remarkable."

The latest six monthly circulation figures for magazines, for the period January to June 2005, are due later this week.

Data sourced from WARC