After 40 years of decline, marriage is finally back in fashion again with a recent report revealing a 3.7% increase in couples tying the knot.
Data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) reveal that there were 8,657 more weddings last year than in 2009, the year that had the lowest number of weddings since the Victorian age.
The popularity of marriage started to wane following the liberal divorce law, which came into action in 1972, which made it possible for couples to end their marriage and divorce within six months.
Before this law came into place, around 400,000 weddings took place in England and Wales each year.
In 2010, 241,100 couples walked down the aisle in England and Wales. Church of England weddings increased by 4%, whereas Christian and religious ceremonies dipped in popularity by 1 to 3.4%.
Researchers believe this could be due to the majority of couples choosing civil weddings held in stately homes, castles and hotels after many of these venues were granted wedding licenses in 1995.
Civil ceremonies clocked up 124,570 weddings in 2010, an increase of 12% in a year. Civil weddings are three times more popular than register office weddings.
A spokesperson from the ONS said that the reasons behind the resurgence of weddings could be down to the tough economic climate, which has made people want to “seek stability” and view family life as more valuable than material goods.
It also follows the Prime Minister, David Cameron’s declaration of giving tax breaks to married couples.
“It is not possible to determine at this stage whether the rise in the provisional number of marriages in 2010 signifies an end to the long-term decline of marriages or whether such increases will continue,” an ONS spokesperson said in a statement.
Only yesterday, a 'happiness' survey revealed that married couples have the highest level of happiness compared to their single counterparts.
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