Wedding Statistics for 2013

Wedding Statistics for 2013

Although it's a somewhat dry topic for discussion today, the facts and figures presented below suggest that despite the recent difficulties attributed to the economic climate, the wedding industry remains extremely healthy and is continuing to go from strength to strength.

If You Like This, You'll Love:
Some Unusual Modern Marriage Facts

Marriage Rates Rise For The Second Year Running!

According to the latest figures released by the Office of National Statistics, the number of marriages taking place in England and Wales has increased for the second year running! The healthy 7% rise over 2 years comes on the back of a steady decline in the popularity of marriage dating back to 1972 - a year when a whopping 426,241 weddings occurred. It was the second most popular year for weddings taking place during the past century.

Contrastingly, 2009 happened to be the worst in 100 years when only 232,443 couples chose to marry. This can be directly attributed to the banking crisis that struck the previous year and demonstrates that when money is tight weddings will be postponed. Hence the subsequent and somewhat unusual - but given circumstances, expected - 7% rise in the figures recently released.

Interestingly 1940 turned out to be the best year for the number of marriages from the past 100 years - no less that 470,500 took place. That's nearly 1300 a day! Clearly the significant figure can be related to the dire circumstances couples found themselves in during WWII.

Some More Wedding Statistics for 2013...


As expected, the popularity of civil ceremonies continues to grow and they now account for 70.4% of all weddings, with 174,600 taking place according to the most recent records.

Unsurprisingly, following the Marriage Act of 1995 the popularity of approved premises continues to grow. 143,220 civil weddings took place in approved premises during 2011.

Whereas only 31,380 couples opted for a registry office wedding.


It therefore follows that the number of religious ceremonies continues to decline year on year with only 29.6% of ceremonies taking place in religious buildings during 2011. That figure is compared with 90% in 1872, 70% in 1963 and 50% in 1991.

Of all the religious ceremonies taking place in 2011, 24% are Church of England and 3.6% Catholic. The remaining 5.4% encompass all other religions, primarily Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, Sikh and Buddhist.


It comes as little surprise that August is the most popular month to marry, with 36,562 or a 15% share of all weddings taking place. July is second with 34,151 - a 14% share - then September with 30,761 - 13%. Followed by May (26,833), June (25,746) and October 21,472) with 11%, 10% and 9% shares respectively.

January (immediately post Christmas festivities/ expenses happens to be the quietest month with only 6,643 weddings talking place - just 2% in total! This is followed by February with 8,744, then November and March with iro 11,350 each


Naturally Saturday is the most popular day with 139,614 occurring in the most recent records - that's a 57.5% share of the total number. Interestingly, Friday is second with 46,429 or 19%, followed by Sunday and Thursday both with approximately 15,000 each, or a 6% share.


In 1968 the average age that men got married was just 23.8 years old and women a mere 21.7 years old. These brides and grooms were the youngest from the past 100 years to get hitched.
Whereas the oldest couples from the past century got married in 2007 - men averaged 33.7 years and women 31.1 years.

Today the average age for men is up to 33.2 and women, 30.9.


The average cost of a wedding in 2013 is also steadily increasing. The figure quoted by Bride's Magazine (as opposed to the ONS who do not record this information) is £22,236 - up nearly £7,000 in 4 years!

However, these figures require additional clarification since the average cost of a wedding in 2008 was approximately £21,000. Whereas the following year (post banking crisis) couples drastically cut spending and spent an average of just over £15,000 on their weddings.

The majority of these stats are just a small selection taken from an extensive range of data on marriages published by the ONS. Further details on these and other related wedding statistics in can be found in a convenient spread sheet format on the RESOURCES page of our main website.