National Records of Scotland

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Births, Deaths and other Vital Events: Preliminary figures for 2013 released

Births, Deaths and other Vital Events: Preliminary figures for 2013 released

Thursday, 13 Mar 2014
Demography News Release Image

Provisional figures for births, deaths, adoptions, marriages and civil partnerships registered during 2013 are published today by the National Records of Scotland.

The statistics show that there were nearly 3,000 fewer marriages in Scotland in 2013 compared to 2012. The fall of around ten per cent takes the annual total to just above the level in 2009, which saw the fewest marriages in over a century.

Tim Ellis, Chief Executive of the National Records of Scotland (NRS) said:

“27,547 marriages were registered in Scotland in 2013. This fall in the annual total follows three consecutive increases from 27,524 in 2009 to 30,534 in 2012."

The provisional figures also show that:

  • There were 530 civil partnerships (216 male and 314 female), 44 fewer than during 2012.
  • 56,014 births were registered in the year – 2,013 (3.5 per cent) fewer than in 2012.
  • 54,700 deaths were registered in Scotland in 2013 – 237 (0.4 per cent) fewer than in 2012. This is the fourth lowest number of deaths recorded in over 150 years. Only 2009, 2010 and 2011 had lower totals.
  • Deaths from cancer fell by 0.4 per cent to 15,803, deaths from coronary heart disease fell by 4.6 per cent to 7,192, and there were 4,444 deaths from stroke (a drop of 0.7 per cent).

Tim Ellis commented:

“The number of births fell in 2013, continuing the trend of gradual decline from the most recent peak of 60,041 in 2008. Levels of births and deaths are both relatively low in historical terms and there have been more births than deaths each year since 2006.

“In recent years, the annual number of deaths has been below 55,000, compared to levels of around 60,000 to 65,000 from the mid-1940s to the mid-1990s, and larger numbers before then.”

The chart on the NRS website which shows how the total numbers of birth, marriages and deaths registered each year have varied since 1974 (which is the first year for which there are records of individual vital events in NRS's statistical database). The chart shows the longer-term trends, and also short-term fluctuations in the some of the numbers.

The full publication 2013 Births, Deaths and Other Vital Events - Preliminary Annual Figures is available on the NRS website.

NRS also published today the full list of Babies’ first names for 2013 .