Research from the ONS suggests that Brits are still wary of…
Following such a turbulent year, during which we spent more time at home than ever before, we thought it would be interesting to see if and how birth rates have been affected in the UK.
We extensively analysed ONS birth data and combined it with local register office figures sourced via freedom of information requests, to see how lockdown baby numbers compared with those pre-pandemic, and learn where in the UK saw the biggest ‘boom’ in births.
Here is what we found…
Statistics show that March 2021 saw the highest number of ‘COVID baby’ registrations during the pandemic, with 58,409 births recorded across the UK.
Of these, 52,473 were in England and Wales, 3,693 were in Scotland and 1,990 were in Northern Ireland.
Our data found that there were nearly a quarter of a million (222,409) ‘COVID babies’ conceived during the lockdowns and born in the UK since December 2020. These numbers were about average, suggesting that the pandemic didn’t affect the nation’s pregnancy plans a great deal.
While we may not have had more or less babies overall during the COVID-19 pandemic, we did see a few peak months in the registration data - the beginning (March 2020) and the end of the first national lockdown (June 2020) appear to have been the most popular times for conceiving.
March 23rd 2020, was when the first national lockdown began, with the country being given the order to stay at home. It may therefore come as no surprise that roughly nine months later in late December 2020 and early January 2021, we saw a higher-than-normal birth rate, with 47,823 and 47,500 births registered respectively.
In late-March 2021 we again saw a similar pattern, with 52,473 births registered across the UK. If we work back nine months this reveals June 2020 as the peak month for ‘COVID baby’ conception.
On 23rd June, Boris Johnson announced that the lockdown would be easing at last… of course it could just be a coincidence!
When comparing birth rates across the country, the Vale of Glamorgan (Wales), Reading, Bexley (London), Sandwell (West Midlands) and Swansea (Wales) saw some of the biggest baby booms between December 2020 - June 2021, compared to the same period in 2019-2020.
Our study found that the Vale of Glamorgan - which borders Bridgend, Cardiff, and Rhondda Cynon Ta - was the area that came out on top, with birth registrations up 345% year on year.
However, it should be noted that on average there are fewer than 60 newborns registered here each year.
If you are one of the many parents who have welcomed new babies in this uncertain time, then you may be looking for some extra peace of mind as things transition back to normal.
Our family life insurance can provide new parents with some reassuring financial security and enable them to focus on the joy of their new child without worrying about the unexpected.
Spokesperson for Reassured added:
With all COVID-19 restrictions now lifted, we’re finally able to look back and explore any of the good outcomes of such a challenging time.
Our analysis shows that many took the big step of having a child in lockdown, with nearly a quarter of a million newborn babies registered by parents across the country between December 2020 and March 2021.
We always recommend that new parents consider investing in insurance to ensure their children have financial protection if the worst should happen. After so many difficult months, a little bit of extra reassurance for the future can go a long way.
Methodology & sources
We analysed ONS and NISRA data on the number of births registered in England, Wales and Northern Ireland between 2020 and 2021 and most popular birthdays for each month.
These datasets were downloaded from:
We put out a Freedom of Information request with register offices, asking them to confirm the number of births registered in their area (covering England and Scotland offices) from January 2019 onwards, as well as any dates when an especially high number of births have been registered if feasible.
It’s worth noting that during first national lockdown there was a temporary delay in birth registration in some local authority offices between April 2020 and May 2020, which could account for some ‘peaks’ in registrations in subsequent months.
The dates connected with the lifting of lockdown restrictions were taken from here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pm-announces-easing-of-lockdown-restrictions-23-june-2020
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