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Same-sex civil partnerships down by 50%

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Same-sex civil partnerships down by 50%

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Published by Jon Land for 24dash.com in Communities and also in Local Government

Same-sex civil partnerships down by 50% Same-sex civil partnerships down by 50%

The number of same-sex civil partnerships in the UK fell by almost 50% last year, it was revealed today.

A total of 8,728 civil ceremonies took place in 2007 - compared to 16,106 the previous year, the first full year since the Civil Partnership Act came into force.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) says the total number of civil partnerships in the UK since the first took place in December 2005 now stands at 26,787.

In England and Wales, civil partnerships fell by 47% in 2007 to 7,929. The figure in Scotland fell by 34% in the same period to 688, and by 4% in Northern Ireland, to 111.

Last year, 55% of all those forming a civil partnership in the UK were male, a fall of 5% from 2006.

There were 4,242 male and 3,393 female partnerships formed in England last year, compared to 129 male and 165 female partnerships in Wales, 339 male and 349 female in Scotland, and 60 male and 51 female in Northern Ireland.

London remains the region in which the most civil partnerships are registered, and was also the area with the highest proportion of male civil partnerships compared to female in 2007. Almost a quarter of all 2007 partnerships took place there, with 1,545 male and 565 female civil ceremonies.

Westminster has become the most popular place to form a civil partnership, with 291 male and 50 female ceremonies last year, taking the top spot from Brighton and Hove. A total of 199 male and 122 female partnerships were formed there last year, making it the second favourite area.

The average age people chose to embark on a civil partnership in the UK fell last year, from 47 to 42.8 for men, and 43.6 to 41.2 for women. Wales has the highest average age for all partners, at 42.2, with Northern Ireland the lowest at 39.7 years. The average age in England was 42.1, and 41.9 in Scotland.

Last year, 11% of men and 23% of women forming a civil partnership in the UK had been in a legal partnership before - a similar percentage as in 2006.

Several high-profile gay couples, including Elton John and partner David Furnish, chose to have a civil ceremony soon after the law allowed them.

Last week it was revealed that Little Britain comic Matt Lucas and long-term partner Kevin McGee were separating just 18 months after their civil partnership was formed.

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