Record number of British people say they have no religion

Sep 5, 2017

By May Bulman

The number of Britons who say they have no religion has hit a record high, new data has revealed.

More than half of the British public (53 per cent) say they are not at all religious – a figure that has increased by five percentage points since 2015 and by 19 percentage points since 1983, when just three in 10 people deemed themselves non-religious.

The news has prompted fresh calls for the Government to cut the amount of public money going to the church and reduce its influence in society.

The decline in religious affiliation is hitting the Church of England particularly hard, with the number of people considering themselves Anglican having halved since 2000 – at just 15 per cent. Young people were particularly underrepresented, with just 3 per cent of those aged 18-24 describing themselves as Anglican, compared with 40 per cent of those aged 75 and over.

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9 comments on “Record number of British people say they have no religion

  • @OP – More than half of the British public (53 per cent) say they are not at all religious – a figure that has increased by five percentage points since 2015 and by 19 percentage points since 1983, when just three in 10 people deemed themselves non-religious.

    . . . . and lots of empty UK churches are being sold off as congregations and financial contributions diminish!

    https://www.richarddawkins.net/2017/08/christians-are-using-emptythepews-to-explain-why-they-left-their-churches/#li-comment-225349

    The same is happening in the more educated parts of mainland Europe.



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  • There is some of the same content from the BBC here:-

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41150792

    Almost two in three 25 to 34 year olds said they were non-religious, while 75% of people aged 75 and over said they were religious.

    The indications are that religions are dying out as the ageing indoctrinated congregations and clergy die out, and are replaced by increasing numbers of well educated citizens, who are happy to live free of bronze-age dogmas god-delusions!



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  • quarecuss #2
    Sep 5, 2017 at 12:52 pm

    @your link ; Saying grace at the Lord Mayor’s installation dinner is something that has been done by way of custom for the last 25 years.

    “I’m very annoyed at this very sad state of affairs; it’s a further indication of the erosion of the Christian heritage upon which this country was founded; indeed, it shows how far we’ve departed from our Christian heritage when we can’t even offer a simple thanks for food,” said Rev McLaughlin.

    Perhaps this muppet is so deluded that he is unable to recognise WHO is providing HIM with a meal, and show some respect for the host who invited him, by thanking her!

    “If she didn’t want to say grace then she should have arranged for someone else to do it or called upon a member of the clergy to offer a simple word of prayer.”

    They really don’t get it, that other people are not going to have the woo-meisters god-delusions shoved down their necks at every public event and that mayors might have more important things to do than spreading woo!

    The minister added that he will be contacting the Alliance Party to express his “extreme displeasure” at the Lord Mayor’s actions.
    A City Hall source told the Belfast Telegraph that the decision had caused widespread anger among [god-deluded?] members across parties and had cast a shadow over the night.

    Poor diddums!
    His god-delusion is most upset and offended at not being allowed to dominate proceedings as a central feature with him being treated as “just” an ORDINARY guest at the meal!

    Perhaps the problem could be solved by all the “offended bigots” who can’t respect their host’s secular arrangements, being missed off the invitation list, next time there is an official dinner for those who have contributed, and are expected to continue to contribute, to the community!
    They can then wait for their god to arrange a meal for them! – and thank him when it arrives! 🙂



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  • Excellent wrong-footing photo on that article as well, q.

    NI has suffered more Stupid Man Syndrome than anywhere in the UK. Religious patriarchy has a lot to lose and deservedly so.

    I can feel a beer coming on.



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  • quarecuss #2
    Sep 5, 2017 at 12:52 pm

    @link – The Alliance Party councillor — who outlined her plan to “promote a Belfast that is open, welcome and inclusive” — was not available for comment when contacted by the Belfast Telegraph last night.

    The Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, Dr Noble McNeely, who attended the event for the first time, said he led prayers at his table when it became apparent that it wasn’t on the agenda for the evening.

    So with a new mayor who is opposing the sectarian divisions, which have caused so much misery and strife in the past, the god-deluded decided to inflict their religion on those present at the tables where they were placed anyway! – and then complain that “inclusive” did not mean them dominating events while they showed no respect for less deluded people with more rational views!

    When it comes to new invitations to future events, most hosts/hostesses know what to do about ill-mannered grumpy ungrateful guests, who do not thank THEM for an earlier invitation!



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  • The numbers of the god-deluded just keep falling away in countries where high quality education is available to all!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-41294688

    Majority of Scots say they are ‘not religious’

    The number of Scots who say they are not religious has risen to almost three quarters, according to new research.

    Just under a quarter (23.6%) said they were religious, while 72.4% said they were not, figures released by Humanist Society Scotland showed.

    This was up from a similar poll in 2011 when 56% said they were not religious while 35% said they were.

    The Humanist Society said the findings raised concerns about official statistics on religion in Scotland.

    It suggested that the way in which census data and other studies of religion were being carried out gave higher figures of religiosity due to the way the question was framed.

    In the latest Social Attitudes Survey in 2016 people were asked whether they “regard yourself as belonging to any particular religion”.

    Almost six in ten (58%) said they didn’t belong to a religion while just over four in ten (41%) said they did.

    Gordon MacRae, chief executive of the Humanist Society Scotland, said: “These new findings raise concerns about the official statistics on the adherence to religion in Scotland.

    “We know that many people identify with a particular religious community, usually due to family ties, but are not themselves practising that religion.

    “These latest findings would suggest there could be as much as a 15% difference between ‘official statistics’ and the reality of religion’s place in the Scottish public daily lives.

    “This raises major questions about key policy decisions made by government regarding special rights given to religious bodies under law. For example, the right of Scotland’s churches to hold the balance of power on local education committees.

    “We need a new consensus in Scottish politics that respects and protects individuals’ right to freedom of religion and belief and separating this from policy making. Scotland’s democracy needs to get to a place where we stop blurring the lines of church and state.”

    The Survation poll of 1,016 Scottish adults was carried out between September 8 and 12 this year for Humanist Society Scotland.

    Of those questioned, 4% preferred not to say whether or not they were religious.

    The Progressive/YouGov poll of 2,007 Scottish adults was carried out in between January 10 and 14, 2011.

    It found that 56% said they were not religious while 35% said they were and 8% said they did not know while 1% did not respond.

    Earlier this year a survey of Scottish Christians found that the number of people who regularly attend church services had fallen by half over 30 years.



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  • However, those who are still prominent as religious leaders, are just as self-deluded in their thinking and public pronouncements – as usual!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41449299

    The Archbishop of Canterbury has criticised the way the BBC handled sexual abuse by Jimmy Savile.

    The Most Rev Justin Welby said the BBC had not shown the same integrity over accusations of child abuse that the Catholic and Anglican churches had.

    He said: “I think we are a kinder society more concerned with our own failures, more willing to be honest where we go wrong in most of our institutions.”

    But he added “there are still dark areas”.

    When asked which, Mr Welby replied: “If I’m really honest, I’d say the BBC is one.

    “I haven’t seen the same integrity over the BBC’s failures over Savile as I’ve seen in the Roman Catholic Church, in the Church of England, in other public institutions over abuse.

    A group of six victims of abuse in the Church of England said they did not recognise the archbishop’s description of “integrity” from their own “bitter experience”.

    “Far from the ‘rigorous response and self-examination’ he claims, our experience of the church, and specifically the archbishop, is of long years of silence, denial and evasion.

    “The Church of England needs to confront its own darkness in relation to abuse before confronting the darkness of others.”

    A BBC spokesman said of the archbishop’s comments: “This isn’t a characterisation we recognise. When the Savile allegations became known we established an independent investigation by a High Court judge.

    “In the interests of transparency, this was published in full. We apologised and accepted all the recommendations.



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  • Alan

    The Most Rev Justin Welby said the BBC had not shown the same integrity over accusations of child abuse that the Catholic and Anglican churches had.

    Sounds like the pot is calling the kettle black.



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