Marriage rates fall to their lowest levels on record as couples choose to just live together

MARRIAGE rates have fallen to their lowest levels on record, figures show.

The figure for opposite sex couples has tumbled because more people are choosing to just live together or delay tying the knot.

It is likely to have fallen further in the past two years as Covid put the brakes on weddings.

But there are signs that those who do get married are sticking together as divorce rates are also at a 30-year low.

Family lawyer Alice Rogers said it showed couples were establishing settled relationships but could not be bothered with the formality and expense of a wedding.

She added: “Couples now place a greater premium on putting down a deposit on a home instead.”

There were 227,870 heterosexual marriages in England and Wales in 2018, the lowest number since 1894, the Office for National Statistics said.

It means one in 20.1 eligible men and one in 18.6 women tied the knot — the lowest rate since records began in 1862.

One in 35 of all marriages were of same-sex couples.

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