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1,409 same-sex marriages between 29 March and 30 June 2014

ONS publishes first same-sex marriage statistics

A total of 1,409 marriages were formed between same sex couples between 29 March (when the first same-sex marriages took place) and 30 June 2014. Of these, 56% of marriages were to female couples (796 marriages) while 44% were to male couples (613 marriages). Over the three day period from 29 March to 31 March 2014 there were 95 marriages of same sex couples. There were 351 marriages in April, 465 in May and 498 in June.

This is the first time that ONS has published provisional statistics on marriage of same sex couples for England and Wales. These statistics cover quarters 1 and 2, 2014.

The average (mean) age at marriage for women was 37.0 years, slightly lower than the male mean age of 38.6 years.  There were more women than men marrying at younger ages, particularly at ages 25 to 29 and 30 to 34 where 63% and 60% of those marrying were female. From age 55 slightly more men than women married with the exception of age 65 and over where equal numbers of men and women married. The greatest number of men and women marrying were aged 30 to 34 with 220 and 330 marriages respectively.

The majority of men and women marrying had never been married or in a civil partnership before (91% of males and 79% of females). Women were more likely than men to have previously been in a civil partnership or marriage that ended in dissolution or divorce (9% of men, 20% of women). A very small percentage of marriages took place for men and women whose previous marriage or civil partnership had ended with the death of their partner (0.5% of men and 0.9% of women).

The early uptake of marriages of same sex couples is lower than the uptake of civil partnerships, possibly because before the introduction of civil partnerships there was no other option for same sex couples to formalise their relationships. Over the first quarter following the introduction of civil partnerships, two thirds (66%) of partnerships were between males. In contrast, 44% of marriages to same sex couples between 29 March and 30 June 2014 were between males.

The statistical bulletin from ONS is here.

21/8/14