12 Aug 2022

500 same-sex marriages took place in Ireland last year, CSO reveals

500 same-sex marriages took place in Ireland last year, CSO reveals

Five hundred same-sex marriages took place in Ireland last year. 

That's according to the latest Marriages report released on Friday from the Central Statistics Office (CSO), which also found the number of marriages celebrated (both same and opposite sex) have still not returned to pre-pandemic figures. 

According to the report, the number of marriages which took place in 2021 saw an 81% increase compared with 2020, however these figures are 15% lower than pre-pandemic 2019 rates. 

Commenting on the report, Statistician Gerard Doolan, said: “There were 17,217 marriages in Ireland in 2021 including 500 same-sex marriages. This equates to a crude (unadjusted) marriage rate of 3.4 per 1,000 population.

"While the number of marriages celebrated in 2021 increased by 81% from 2020, it was still down 15% from 2019 when there were 20,313 marriages, reflecting the impact of COVID-19 restrictions." 

The report also observed brides and grooms are getting married at an older age, with 35.4 noted as the average age for brides and 37.4 for grooms in opposite-sex marriages. 

The average age for both males and females in same-sex marriages was 40.1 years. 

According to Mr Doolan, the most popular form of ceremony for opposite-sex couples was a Catholic ceremony (40%), followed by a civil ceremony (34%). 

The popularity of these two forms of ceremonies for opposite-sex couples has been in decline since 2014, however, when they accounted for 87% of all marriage ceremonies. A civil ceremony was the choice of 328 same-sex couples (66%).

A Humanist ceremony accounted for 8.3% or 1,394 of all opposite-sex marriages and 13.6% or 68 of all same-sex marriages in 2021. 

Mr Doolan continued: "With the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, it’s no surprise to see the return of August and September as the most popular months for opposite-sex marriages and September and July for same-sex ceremonies. January was the least favoured month to tie the knot for all couples. 

"Friday and Saturday continue to be the most popular days to tie the knot for opposite-sex couples, while Friday, followed by Thursday were the most favoured days to wed for same-sex couples. These are unchanged from 2020 results. Sundays and Tuesdays were the least popular days of the week to marry for all couples." 

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