Muslim population of England passes the three million mark for the first time as the numbers of Christians continues to decline, figures reveal
According to estimates prepared by Whitehall it turns out that Muslims are the fastest-growing faith group in the country – while allegiance to Christianity continues to decline. Pictured: Muslims congregate at Regents Park Mosque for noon prayers in London
The figures were produced by the Office for National Statistics as part of a research project to try for the first time to make regular assessments of the size of different ethnic and religious groups. Until now religious and ethnic minority populations could be gauged only once a decade using the results of the full-scale ten-yearly national census.
According to the ONS assessment, Christians continue to decline in number, but the drop in allegiance to Christianity may be slowing.
Among other faith groups, the share of Hindus in the population has climbed slightly, while the proportion of Sikhs has fallen by a similar small amount. The scale of the Jewish and Buddhist shares of the population have remained stable, the report said. The share of people who say they have no religion at all or who will not discuss their faith has risen to almost a third of the English population, an increase almost certainly a result of the fall-off in Christian belief.