"Although there were fewer different acts in the chart this year (perhaps we'd reached saturation point on that one in 1998), we still had the impressive total of thirty-seven, a total that, prior to 1996, would have seemed almost unfeasibly huge. Diversity, then, still remained a refreshing characteristic of the final chart of the century...Pleasingly, while British bands predominated as usual, the chart featured acts from the United States, Canada, Germany and Japan." (Whitby, M., The Festive Fifty, Nevin Publishing, 2005, p. 50.)
Peel took the unusual step of granting an 'honorary' play for Monkey Steals The Drum's "Injured Birds", which narrowly failed to make the top 50, and which Peel claimed to be his favourite song of the year.
Top act was Hefner with five entries, including three with the word 'Hymn' in the title.
Mark E. Smith achieved the unparalleled feat of being the only artist to make the chart with five different acts (the Fall, Elastica, Long Fin Killie, D.O.S.E. and the Inspiral Carpets), albeit not in the same chart.
Half Man Half Biscuit repeated the Delgados' attainment of entering the chart with a session track that would reappear the next year as an official release.
The session track by Godspeed You Black Emperor has to date still never seen an official release: since it is the only song the band recorded for Peel (clocking in at 19 minutes), this marks only the second occasion in the chart's history when every track from a Peel session made the Festive Fifty (the other one in analogous circumstances being the Orb's 'Loving You' in 1990).