UK Census 2011: 5,021 Baha’i Adherents

UK census 2011The UK government’s Office for National Statistics has released data for the 2011 census. The census data for Wales and the UK shows a surprisingly large influx of foreigners, especially from Poland. Among the various datasets, the religious make up of Wales and the UK continues to show a predictable transformation.

Christianity, while by far the largest religious affiliation, continues to decline:

The number of residents who stated that their religion was Christian in 2011 was fewer than in 2001. The size of this group decreased 13 percentage points to 59 per cent (33.2 million) in 2011 from 72 per cent (37.3 million) in 2001.

In contrast, the Muslim population has been growing at an annual rate of 5.75% and reached a total of 2,706,066 – approaching 5% of the total population of UK and Wales.

Also increasing are those who identify as ‘no religion’ or atheist. Only 29,267 self-identified as atheist but a much larger group had no religious affiliation:

The size of the group who stated that they had no religious affiliation increased by 10 percentage points from 15 per cent (7.7 million) in 2001 to 25 per cent (14.1 million) in 2011.

Adherents of the Baha’i Faith increased to 5,021 from 4,645 in the 2001 census. If my math is correct, that is an annual 0.78% growth per year. Put more simply, between 37-38 new Baha’is have been added per year since 2001. I’m not sure that you can call that ‘growth’ but it is slightly higher than the general population growth of 0.70% per year.

UK census 2011 religions

Within the ‘alternative religion’ category, the Baha’i Faith is eclipsed by two satirical entries: Jedi and Heavy Metal. Jedis are a fictional religious group within the Star Wars universe but they number in the hundreds of thousand. Heavy Metal (music) religion adherents were 6,242.

For more information, see the 2011 interactive religion data map for the UK.

  • Ronald Delavega

    HEllo, Happiness Unto You!

    I have read the blog now for some time, and I see frustrations by a lot of Baha’is (spelling?) In full disclosure, I am not a Baha’i, but a Zarathushtrian. However, the Gathas are, in their own way, as Universal in character as its Baha’i faith, the Ratu or Guide, as seen by Zarathushtra in the Ahunavar, is roughly the same as the Guardian, (It means Spiritual Guide) and Vohu Kshathra Vairyo or the Loving Good Kingdom of Choice, which was meant by Zarathshtra as both an Earthly governing body with a temporal Leader, (Ahu)and a Spiritual Guid,e (Ratu) all to be chosen seems, to me, to be a fairly close equivalent, albeit partially so, of your International House of Justice. So I have been puzzled by the similarities and, when I ran into your Blog,. I decided to read it.

    I hope you do not consider me arrogant or meddling, but after checking some of the figures here, it seems to me that, basically, ‘the Troops” as you call them , that is a mass of conversions have not come and that, indeed, your numbers seem stagnant , Most of you who dislike this fact , blame it on the bureaucratic and dictatorial nature of the International House of Justice, which appears, from election data you have shown, to re-elect itself, (as do National Assemblies) almost in perpetuity. This is something serious, as bureaucratic meddling and dictatorial tendencies, are the vane of all organized religions.

    However, by Divine Revelation, this was not supposed to happen to Baha’i faith These are the institutions created by Abdul Baha and Shogi Effendi under direct inspiration from God’s Manifestation for this era ( according to your beliefs) Could it be that something has gone against the Covenent , that the International House of Justice needs the Guardianship, in order to be inspired in its decisions? And is not this the position of the Orthodox Baha’i. Could they be right? What makes them wrong in your opinion?

  • Robert Nikjoo

    It was only when I left Britain and had spare time that I realised how horrendous it was. There have been Bahais in Britain for over 100 years. There should be 200,000 Bahais in Britain. Main reason for tiny size is lack of Bahai centers.