Family size in the United Kingdom shrinks

Dec. 9, 2010 at 8:18 PM

LONDON, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- The size of the average family in the United Kingdom is getting smaller, the U.K. Office for National Statistic says.

Researchers looked at women born in England and Wales in 1964 and compared them with their mothers' generation, represented by women born in 1937, the BBC reported Thursday.

By 2009 the younger generation had an average of 1.9 children, while at the same stage in their lives their mothers had an average 2.4 children, the data shows.

And more women in the younger generation are deciding not to have children at all, the researchers found.

Twenty percent of women born in 1964 are childless, compared with 12 percent of women born in 1937.

That's the highest rate of childlessness in 44 years, comparable to women born in 1920 whose early 20s, when they would have been most likely to start a family, were disrupted by World War II.

The most common family size for both groups remains at two children, but larger families are becoming rarer, the researchers found.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending News
Seattle sea otter learns how to use an inhaler
Catholic conservatives wary of Pope's climate change message
Apple signals delivery of electric car by 2019, report says
Self-impregnated snake in Missouri has another 'virgin birth'
Ancient Roman village found in Germany