Marriage: Churches

Cabinet Office written question – answered am ar 29 Mawrth 2023.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Lord Kilclooney Lord Kilclooney Crossbench

To ask His Majesty's Government, what percentage of religious marriages in England were solemnised in (1) Anglican churches, (2) Reformed Evangelical churches, and (3) Roman Catholic churches, in the most recent year for which figures are available.

Photo of Baroness Neville-Rolfe Baroness Neville-Rolfe Minister of State (Cabinet Office)

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the noble Lord/Baroness’ Parliamentary Question of 28 February is attached.

The Rt Hon. the Lord Kilclooney

House of Lords

London

SW1A 0PW

7 March 2023

Dear Lord Kilclooney,

As National Statistician and Chief Executive of the UK Statistics Authority, I am responding to your Parliamentary Questions asking how many marriages took place in England for the most recent year for which figures are available; and how many of those were secular (HL6000) and what percentage of religious marriages in England were solemnised in (1) Anglican churches, (2) Reformed Evangelical churches, and (3) Roman Catholic churches, in the most recent year for which figures are available. (HL6001).

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) publishes ‘Marriages data for England and Wales’[1] with the most recent being for 2019. The total number of marriages in England in 2019 (including both civil and religious marriages) was 208,151 [2] . Of these, the total number of civil marriages in England was 170,634.[3,4]

The total number of religious marriages in England in 2019 was 37,517. 72.5 per cent of these were Church of England. Marriages in Reformed Evangelical churches are included in ‘Other Christian denominations’ which accounted for 11.4 per cent of religious marriages [5] . 10.4 per cent of religious marriages in England in 2019 were Roman Catholic.

If you need anything further, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Yours sincerely,

Professor Sir Ian Diamond

[1]https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/marriagecohabitationandcivilpartnerships/bulletins/marriagesinenglandandwalesprovisional/2019

[2]Figures include marriages to both same-sex and opposite-sex couples.

[3]Civil marriages are those which are carried out at either a register office or approved premises by or in the presence of a registrar, and do not include any religious content.

[4]Marriage statistics by manner of solemnisation (either civil or religious) can be misleading as some religious marriages (such as Muslim and Sikh) can take place at unregistered premises. To be registered as a legal marriage the couple have a further marriage ceremony in a register office or approved building. Such weddings are coded as civil marriages because only the civil marriage certificate is received.

[5] 'Evangelical Reformed churches’ are included in ‘Other Christian denominations' which also include Methodist, Calvinistic Methodist, United Reformed Church, Congregationalist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Society of Friends (Quakers), Salvation Army, Brethren, Mormon, Unitarian and Jehovah's Witnesses'.

ONS Response to PQ6000 and PQ6001 (pdf, 112.6KB)

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