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New census reveals the majority of Scots have ‘no religion’

The outcome of the latest census conducted in Scotland in 2022 was published on Tuesday the 21st of May. In the census, over half of Scottish people, 51.1% , said they had no religion.

The question about religion was optional and only 6.2% chose not to answer it. The number of people who said they had no religion has increased significantly from 36.7% in the previous 2011 census. 

Almost all council regions responded ‘No religion’ in Scotland. The exceptions were Na h-Eileanan Siar  –  located at the Outer Hebrides – where ‘Church of Scotland’ was the most common reply, and Inverclyde, where most opted for ‘Roman Catholic’.

The Church of Scotland suffered a huge loss of worshippers, compared to the previous census: it dropped down from 32.4% in 2011 to 20.4% in 2022.

The number of Roman Catholics also dropped, from 15.88 % in 2011 to 13.3 %in 2022. The number in the Other Christian category decreased by 12,000. Interestingly, the number of Muslims increased by 43,100 during this period.

According to Reverend David Cameron, from the Church of Scotland, the statistics were “sobering.”

Director of Census Statistics Jon Wroth-Smith stated: “These statistics give a fascinating insight into religion, ethnicity, national identity and language use across Scotland and how they have changed over the years. It is exciting to publish the first of the topic releases and this, along with our other census data to come, will help local and central government, businesses and charities to plan services in the years ahead.”



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