The number of married Britons has dropped to an all-time low with just 46.6 percent of over 16s declaring themselves married in the census.
Take a look back to 1971 when two thirds of the population was married and the figures seem even more shocking. So what’s putting couples off the idea of matrimony?
Is the promise of ‘till death do us part’ simply too daunting in a society where romantic relationships often play second-fiddle to the demands of a career? Or do couples simply not feel the need to cement their bond with a ring and a binding legal document?
Perhaps modern men and women have more courage to leave unhappy marriages these days – though the number of divorcees were only slightly up, from 8.2 per cent to 9 per cent.
And while the census showed that a third of the adult population is now ‘single’, this figure includes those in co-habiting relationships so could well include loyal couples who simply haven’t seen fit to walk down the aisle.
So what do you think? Is marriage an outdated institution that does not stand up to the realities of modern society? Or should more couples be doing the honourable thing by marrying their significant others? Tell us in the comment box below or join the conversation in our forums…