Friday, January 10, 2014
One in ten children under the age of four is now Muslim in England and Wales, the latest statistics show
David Voas, Professor of Population Studies at the University of Essex, said that the number of practising Muslims could soon outnumber the number of Christians who actively worship in Britain. An Office for National Statistics breakdown of Britain’s religions and age groups shows that in 2011 there were 3.5 million children aged 0-4, of whom 320,000 were Muslim. There were 1.6 million Muslims in England and Wales in 2001, or 3% of the population, according to the census. By 2011 the Muslim population had grown to 2.7 million people or 4.8% of the population. Continuing immigration from Pakistan, Bangladesh and India has been added to by new immigration from African countries and from the Middle East. Birth rates of Muslims of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin remain quite high. There seem to be very low levels of falling away from religion among Muslims. There are now 136 Muslim schools, 125 of them in the private sector, according to the Department for Education. Britain has a total of 1,600 mosques and the first British halal food festival was held in September 2013.