Civil partnerships increase by 6.4% says ONS
Published: 31st Jul 2012 11:41:55
The number of civil partnerships in the UK has risen, according to provisional figures released by the Office for National Statistics.
There were 6,795 such partnerships in 2011, an increase of 6.4% since 2010.
And the provisional number of civil partnership dissolutions granted in the UK rose by 28.7% over the same period, to 672.
Civil partnerships were introduced in 2005 to give same-sex couples the same legal rights as married couples.
However, the law does not allow such unions to be referred to as marriages.
A dissolution is a legal end to such a partnership.
In 2011, there were slightly more male unions - 50.7% - than female.
But the previous year there had been slightly more partnerships between women - 51.2% - than men.
The ONS said: "Initially the numbers of males forming civil partnerships were much higher than females. Since 2007, the numbers of male and female civil partnerships have been converging.
"This reflects examples of other European countries that have seen a majority of early civil partnerships being formed by male couples followed by more converged figures."
The figures also showed that the average age of men forming a civil partnership in the UK in 2011 was 40.
And the average age for women was 38.
Scotland could become the first part of the UK to introduce gay marriage after the SNP government recently announced plans to make the change.
Source: Home Office consultation paper
Ministers confirmed they would bring forward a bill on the issue, indicating the earliest ceremonies could take place by the start of 2015.
Last month, Downing Street defended plans to change the status of civil ceremonies to allow gay and lesbian couples in England and Wales to get married.
It said it was confident safeguards to stop religious organisations being forced to take part in services would not be overturned by European courts.
Ministers plan to pass the law by 2015.
However, the Church of England has said the move would "alter the intrinsic nature of marriage as the union of a man and a woman".
In its 11 June response to a consultation on the issue, the Church of England said plans to exempt religious organisations from performing gay marriages would be unlikely to survive legal challenges in domestic and European courts.
However, Home Secretary Theresa May has said she believes ministers can create safeguards to protect the concerns expressed by religious groups.
There are currently no plans for same-sex marriage legislation in Northern Ireland.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Civil partnerships increase by 6.4% says ONS. [Online] (Updated 31 Jul 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news.php/1443666-Civil-partnerships-increase-by-6-4-says-ONS [Accessed 18th May 2013]
At 11:52:06 in EnglandA West Midlands theatre will be demolished as part of £10m regeneration plans, a council has said....
At 11:51:12 in Northern IrelandThe family of a police officer who was murdered during a robbery in the Irish Republic earlier this year is set to receive a special medal i...
At 11:40:11 in EnglandA woman who disappeared while swimming off the Lincolnshire coast was found alive after a major search operation....
At 11:26:57 in WalesA footpath is likely to remain closed for some time after the collapse of a stone wall near a historic hotel in Denbighshire....
At 11:21:04 in Northern IrelandA 14-year-old girl has been punched in the face and knocked to the ground during a mugging in Belfast....
At 11:15:29 in EnglandFootball legends will be playing against British Army players at Reading's Madejski Stadium later to raise money for two military chari...
At 11:04:32 in WalesA new £5m waterside development in Colwyn Bay is being launched with a weekend of celebrations....
At 10:55:00 in HeadlinesThe European Commission is to ban the use of refillable bottles and dipping bowls of olive oil at restaurant tables from next year....
At 10:44:36 in Northern IrelandA second day of talks aimed at improving relations between loyalist and republican communities and the police is taking place in Wales....
At 10:35:45 in HeadlinesNorth Korea has fired three short-range missiles from its east coast, South Korea's defence ministry said....
News In Other Categories
A West Midlands theatre will be demolished as part of £10m regeneration plans, a council has said....
World Whisky Day, which was created by a University of Aberdeen student last year, is being held for a second time....
It's the time of year where students are poring over their books, trying to ensure they are prepared for their exams....
The education secretary is like a "fanatical personal trainer" who urges schools to jump higher and run faster, a head teachers...
The Swedish city of Malmo is gearing up to host the Eurovision Song Contest final with 26 countries set to perform for millions of TV viewer...
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol ba...