General

Number of Christians in England, Wales falls below half for 1st time

The census showed 46.2% of people saying they were Christian, a decrease from 53.9% in 2011.

Those saying they had no religion increased from 25.2% in 2011 to 37.2% in 2021.

Statistics for other religions from 2011 to 2021 included: an increase in those identifying as Muslim from 4.9% to 6.7%; Hindus from 1.5% to 1.7%; Sikhs from 0.8% to 0.9%; Buddhists from 0.4% to 0.5%, and Jews from 265,000 to 271,000 (both 0.5%).

The Archbishop of York, the Most Rev Stephen Cottrell, responded to the data, saying that it was “not a great surprise” that the census showed fewer people identifying as Christian.

"We have left behind the era when many people almost automatically identified as Christian, but other surveys consistently show how the same people still seek spiritual truth and wisdom and a set of values to live by,” he said.

Andrew Copson, the chief executive of Humanists UK, said the "biggest demographic change in England and Wales of the last ten years has been the dramatic growth of the non-religious. They mean the UK is almost certainly one of the least religious countries on Earth".

Source: Anadolu Agency