In 2013, Hollyoaks was censured by Ofcom for airing a fight between Brendan and Walker.Channel 4

Murder plots currently playing out in Coronation Street and Eastenders may have viewers gripped but when it comes to violence Hollyoaks beats its soap rivals hands down.

According to research by media regulator Ofcom, the Channel 4 drama is the most violent soap on British TV, airing threatening scenes five times more regularly than EastEnders.

The number of violent scenes featured in the programme, which is aimed at a younger demographic than its competitors, rose from 2.1 violent scenes per hour in 2001/2 to 11.5 scenes per hour last year.

While EastEnders, which is fond of killing off characters, has dropped from 6.1 to 2.1 in the same period.

The study also found that Hollyoaks, which recently took home the Best Soap at the 2014 British Soap awards, accounted for over half of all violent scenes from soaps broadcast last year.

The investigation come just months after Hollyoaks was censured by Ofcom in August 2013 for airing a scene in which a character was pushed under a train before the watershed. At the time the Watchdog slammed the scenes as "violent and shocking" and unsuitable.

"Viewers were prepared to tolerate moderately violent scenes before the watershed; however, all agreed that strong scenes with a vulnerable victim were unacceptable before 9pm," the regulator said.

Fortunately, there have not been any major viewer complaints about violence in the long-running series ever since.

Despite the new findings, Channel 4 bosses insist the portrayal of violence on the show is "appropriately limited and is shown within the context of long-running storylines".

"We are committed to ensuring that all Hollyoaks storylines are appropriate for a pre-watershed audience," a spokesperson told the Guardian newspaper.

"The portrayal of violence is appropriately limited and is shown within the context of long-running storylines – and programmes that include scenes which some people may find upsetting are clearly flagged to viewers at the beginning of the broadcast.

"Hollyoaks has a track record of tackling issues affecting its audience and has worked alongside government and leading charities on subjects such as domestic abuse and bullying."