New report reveals 158 same-sex marriages took place in NI in 2020

Registrar General’s Annual Report also indicates that October was the most popular month to get married last year

New report reveals 158 same-sex marriages took place in NI in 2020

In terms of population change, the estimated population of Northern Ireland rose by 1,800 people from mid-2019 to reach 1.90 million in the year

By Damian Mullan

Reporter:

By Damian Mullan

Email:

damianmullan@thechronicle.uk.com

THERE were 158 same-sex marriages in 2020, the first year legislation enabling them to take place came into force, according to the latest statistics in the 2020 Registrar General’s Annual Report.

The findings, published today by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), show there were 3,724 marriages and 43 civil partnerships registered in 2020 in total. Of the 43 civil partnerships registered, 23.3% involved male partnerships, 9.3% involved female partnerships and the remaining 67.4% were opposite-sex partnerships.

The report also shows that October was the most popular month to get married in 2020 and Saturday 10 of October was the most popular day, with 65 couples having married on that date. The average age for brides and grooms has increased to 34 and 36.3 years respectively, compared with 26.2 years for brides and 28.3 years for grooms in 1990.

The impact of Covid 19 Regulations, including limitations on social gatherings, has led to a drop in the number of weddings and civil partnerships registered in 2020 as many were postponed or cancelled.

The necessity to prioritise the registration of deaths, coupled with appointment-based procedures for births registrations also meant that the number of births registered dropped slightly in 2020 to 20,815 (10,772 males and 10,043 females). Of this, 45.1% occurred outside of marriage/civil partnership, compared to 18.0% three decades ago.

The report further reveals that the number of births to teenage mothers (mothers less than 20 years of age) continues to fall to a record low at 489 (2.3%) out of the total 20,815 births registered in 2020. This is less than half the number recorded a decade previously (1,265) and almost 75% less than three decades ago (1,853).

The average age of first-time mums has continued to rise, up from 25.3 years in 1990 to 29.2 years in 2020. The average age of all mums has similarly risen, from 27.9 years to 31.1 years over the last three decades.

2020 saw the second lowest stillbirth rate (3.3 per 1,000 births) on record in Northern Ireland, with 69 stillbirths registered.

The number of deaths registered in 2020 (17,614) showed an 11.8% increase on the 2019 total and 18.2% more than two decades ago when the severe flu epidemic occurred in 2000.

Cancer continued to be the leading cause of death in 2020, accounting for 26.2% of all deaths and was the most common cause of death for both sexes, with diseases of the circulatory system (such as heart disease and cerebrovascular disease) the second most common cause for both (21.5%).

Final figures show that Covid-19 accounted for 9.2% (1,625) of all deaths registered in 2020 with almost half (44.5%) accounted for by people aged 85 or over.

In terms of population change, the estimated population of Northern Ireland rose by 1,800 people from mid-2019 to reach 1.90 million in the year. This increase can mainly be attributed to the difference between births and deaths.

Projections indicate that the population of Northern Ireland will continue to grow until 2048 with a potential fall in overall population projected beyond that. The number of people aged 65 and over is projected to overtake children by mid-2028.

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