Religion in the United Kingdom
|Parts of this article (those related to census data except the main tables of census statistics) are outdated. (November 2013)|
Religion in the United Kingdom and in the countries that preceded it has been dominated, for over 1,400 years, by various forms of Christianity. According to some surveys, a majority of citizens still identify with Christianity, although regular church attendance has fallen dramatically since the middle of the twentieth century, and immigration and demographic change have contributed to the growth of other faiths.
Religious affiliations of United Kingdom citizens are recorded by regular surveys, the four major ones being the UK Census, the Labour Force Survey, the British Social Attitudes survey and the European Social Survey. According to the 2011 UK census, Christianity is the major religion, followed by Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Judaism and Buddhism in terms of number of adherents. This, and the relatively large number of individuals with nominal or no religious affiliations has led commentators to variously describe the United Kingdom as a multi-faith, secularised, or post-Christian society.
The United Kingdom was formed by the union of previously independent countries from 1707, and consequently most of the largest religious groups do not have UK-wide organisational structures. While some groups have separate structures for the individual countries of the United Kingdom, others may have a single structure covering England and Wales or Great Britain. Similarly, due to the relatively recent creation of Northern Ireland in 1921, most major religious groups in Northern Ireland are organised on an all-Ireland basis.
- 1 History
- 2 Statistics
- 3 Abrahamic
- 3.1 Christianity
- 3.1.1 Church of England
- 3.1.2 Roman Catholicism
- 3.1.3 Presbyterianism and Congregationalism
- 3.1.4 Methodism
- 3.1.5 Baptists
- 3.1.6 Charismatic and pentecostal
- 3.1.7 Eastern Orthodox
- 3.1.8 Other Trinitarian denominations
- 3.1.9 Non Trinitarian denominations
- 3.1.10 Latter-day Saints
- 3.1.11 Other Non Trinitarian denominations
- 3.2 Islam
- 3.3 Judaism
- 3.4 Bahá'í Faith
- 3.1 Christianity
- 4 Dharmic
- 5 Jediism
- 6 Neopaganism
- 7 Religion and society
- 8 Main religious leaders
- 9 Notable places of worship
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
- 13 Notes
Forms of Christianity have dominated religious life in what is now the United Kingdom for over 1,400 years. It was introduced by the Romans to what is now England, Wales, and Southern Scotland; and, after the Pagan Anglo-Saxon invasions from the fifth century, it was reintroduced by Roman Catholic and Celtic missionaries to all parts of Great Britain and Ireland.
Roman Catholicism remained the dominant form of Christianity throughout the Middle Ages, but the (Anglican) Church of England became the independent established church in England and Wales from 1534 as part of the Protestant English Reformation. It retains a representation in the UK Parliament and the British monarch is its Supreme Governor.
In Scotland, the Presbyterian Church of Scotland, established in a separate Scottish Reformation in the sixteenth century, is recognised as the national church. It is not subject to state control, and the British monarch is an ordinary member, required to swear an oath to "maintain and preserve the Protestant Religion and Presbyterian Church Government" upon his or her accession.
The adherence to Roman Catholicism continued at various levels in different parts of Britain and most strongly in Ireland and would expand in Great Britain, partly due to Irish immigration in the nineteenth century.
Particularly from the mid-seventeenth century, forms of Protestant nonconformity, including Congregationalists, Baptists, Quakers, and, later, Methodists, grew outside of the established church. The (Anglican) Church in Wales was disestablished in 1920 and, as the (Anglican) Church of Ireland was disestablished in 1870 before the partition of Ireland, there is no established church in Northern Ireland.
Particularly since the 20th century, immigration and demographic change have contributed to the growth of other faiths, including Islam, Hinduism, Neo-Paganism, Sikhism, Judaism, and Buddhism. This, and the relatively large number of individuals with nominal or no religious affiliations has led commentators to variously describe the United Kingdom as a multi-faith, secularised, or post-Christian society.
The statistics for current religion (not religion of upbringing where also asked) from the 2011 census and the corresponding statistics from the 2001 census are set out in the tables below.
|Religion (2011)||England||Wales||England and Wales||Scotland||Great Britain||Northern Ireland||United Kingdom|
|Total non-Christian religion||4,614,244||8.7||83,232||2.7||4,697,476||8.4||136,049||2.6||4,833,525||7.9||14,859||0.8||4,848,384||7.7|
|Religion not stated||3,804,104||7.2||233,928||7.6||4,038,032||7.2||368,039||7.0||4,406,071||7.2||122,252||6.8||4,528,323||7.2|
|No religion and Religion not stated||16,918,336||31.9||1,216,925||39.7||18,135,261||32.3||2,309,155||43.6||20,444,416||33.3||305,416||16.9||20,749,832||32.8|
|Religion (2001)||England||Wales||England and Wales||Scotland||Great Britain||Northern Ireland||United Kingdom|
|Total non-Christian religion||2,939,740||6.0||43,765||1.5||2,983,505||5.7||94,945||1.9||3,078,450||5.4||5,028||0.3||3,083,478||5.2|
|No religion||7,171,332||14.6||537,935||18.5||7,709,267||14.8||1,394,460||27.6||9,103,727||15.9||no data||no data|
|Religion not stated||3,776,515||7.7||234,143||8.1||4,010,658||7.7||278,061||5.5||4,288,719||7.5||no data||no data|
|No religion and Religion not stated||10,947,847||22.3||772,078||26.6||11,719,925||22.5||1,672,521||33.0||13,392,446||23.5||233,853||13.9||13,626,299||23.2|
Religious affiliations of UK citizens are recorded by regular surveys, the four major ones being the UK Census, the Labour Force Survey, the British Social Attitudes survey and the European Social Survey. The different questions asked by these surveys produced different results:
- The 2001 census for England and Wales asked the question "What is your religion?" with a response of 14.81% selecting 'None'.
- The 2001 census for Scotland asked the question "What religion, religious denomination or body do you belong to?" with a response of 27.55% selecting 'None'.
- The Labour Force Survey asked the question "What is your religion even if you are not currently practising?" with a response of 15.7% selecting 'No religion' in 2004 and 22.4% selecting 'No religion' in 2010.
- The British Social Attitudes survey asked the question "Do you regard yourself as belonging to any particular religion?" with 41.22% of respondents selecting 'No Religion' in 2001 and 50.67% selecting 'No Religion' in 2009.
- The European Social Survey asked the question "Which religion or denomination do you belong to at present?" with 50.54% of respondents selecting 'No Religion' in 2002 and 52.68% selecting 'No Religion' in 2008.
The wording of the question affects the outcome of polls as is apparent when comparing the results of the Scottish census with that of the English and Welsh census. An ICM poll for The Guardian in 2006 asked the question "Which religion do you yourself belong to?" with a response of 64% stating 'Christian' and 26% stating 'None'. In the same survey, 63% claimed they are not religious with just 33% claiming they are. This suggests that almost a third of the non-religious UK population identify with Christianity out of habit.
The British Social Attitudes surveys and the European Social Surveys are fielded to adult individuals. In contrast, the United Kingdom Census and the Labour Force Surveys are household surveys; the respondent completes the questionnaire on behalf of each member of the household, including children, as well as for themselves. The 2010 Labour Force Survey claimed that 54% of Children aged from birth to four years are Christian rising to 59% for children aged between 5 and 9 and 65% for children aged between 10 and 14. The inclusion of children with adult imposed religions influences the results of the polls.
Other major polls agree with the British Social Attitudes surveys and the European Social Surveys, with a YouGov survey fielded in February 2012 indicating that 43% of respondents claimed to belong to a religion and 76% claimed they were not very religious or not religious at all. An Ipsos MORI survey fielded in August 2003 indicated that 18% of respondents claimed to be "a practising member of an organised religion" and 25% claimed "I am a non-practising member of an organised religion".
The 2001 census contained voluntary questions on religious affiliation. In Scotland and Northern Ireland the census also contained questions on the religion in which a person had been brought up. As a result of comparisons with survey data The Office for National Statistics concluded that the census results for England and Wales were more comparable to the results for religion of upbringing in Scotland and Northern Ireland than for current religious affiliation. At the time the Census was carried out, there was an Internet campaign that encouraged people to record their religion as Jedi or "Jedi Knight". The number of people who stated Jedi was 390,000 (0.7 per cent of the population).
|Church of England||19.9|
|Presbyterian/Church of Scotland||2.2|
|Christian (no denomination)||9.3|
|Refused / NA||0.4|
In the 2001 census, Christianity was the largest religion being claimed by 71.6% of respondents. This figure was found to be 53% in the 2007 Tearfund survey, 42.9% in the 2009 British Social Attitudes Survey and 42.98% in the EU-funded European Social Survey published in April 2009 for those claiming to be Christian.
Although there are no UK-wide data in the 2001 census on adherence to individual Christian denominations, Ceri Peach has estimated that 62% of Christians are Anglican, 13.5% Roman Catholic, 6% Presbyterian, 3.4% Methodist with small numbers of other Protestant denominations and the Orthodox church. The 2009 British Social Attitudes Survey, which covers Great Britain but not Northern Ireland, indicated that over 50% would self classify as not religious at all, 19.9% were part of the Church of England, 9.3% non-denominational Christian, 8.6% Roman Catholic, 2.2% Presbyterian/Church of Scotland, 1.3% Methodist, 0.53% Baptist, 1.17% other Protestant, 0.23% United Reformed Church/Congregational, 0.06% Free Presbyterian, 0.03% Brethren and 0.41% other Christian.
Religions other than Christianity: Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism and Judaism have established a presence in the United Kingdom, both through immigration and by attracting converts, and others including the Bahá'í Faith, Rastafari movement and Neopaganism.
Society in the United Kingdom is markedly more secular than in the past and the number of churchgoers fell over the second half of the 20th century. The Ipsos MORI poll in 2003 reported that 18% were "a practising member of an organised religion". The Tearfund Survey in 2007 found that only 7% of the population considered themselves as practising Christians. Ten per cent attend church weekly and two-thirds had not gone to church in the past year. The Tearfund Survey also found that two thirds of UK adults (66%) or 32.2 million people have no connection with the Church at present (nor with another religion). These people were evenly divided between those who have been in the past but have since left (16 million) and those who have never been in their lives (16.2 million).
Currently, regular church attendance in the United Kingdom stands at 6% of the population with the average age of the attendee being 51. This shows a decline in church attendance since 1980 when regular attendance stood at 11% with an average age of 37. It is predicted that by 2020, attendance will be around 4% with an average age of 56. This decline in church attendance has forced many churches to close down across the United Kingdom with the Church of England alone being forced to close 1,500 churches between 1969 and 2002. Their fates include dereliction, demolition and residential conversion.
A survey in 2002 found Christmas attendance at Anglican churches in England varied between 10.19% of the population in the diocese of Hereford, down to just 2.16% in Manchester. Church attendance at Christmas in some dioceses was up to three times the average for the rest of the year. Overall church attendance at Christmas has been steadily increasing in recent years; a 2005 poll found that 43% expected to attend a church service over the Christmas period, in comparison with 39% and 33% for corresponding polls taken in 2003 and 2001 respectively.
A December 2007 report by Christian Research showed that Roman Catholicism had become the best-attended services of Christian denominations in England, with average attendance at Sunday Mass of 861,000, compared to 852,000 attending Anglican services. Attendance at Anglican services had declined by 20% between 2000 and 2006, while attendance at Catholic services, boosted by large-scale immigration from Poland and Lithuania, had declined by only 13%. In Scotland attendance at Church of Scotland services declined by 19% and attendance at Catholic services fell by 25%. British Social Attitudes Surveys have shown the proportion of those in Great Britain who consider they "belong to" Christianity to have fallen from 66% in 1983 to 43% in 2009.
One study shows that in 2004 at least 930,000 Muslims attended a mosque at least once a week, just outnumbering the 916,000 regular church goers in the Church of England. Muslim sources claim the number of practising Muslims is underestimated as many of them pray at home.
There is a disparity between the figures for those identifying themselves with a particular religion and for those proclaiming a belief in a God:
- In a 2011 YouGov poll, 34% of UK citizens claimed they believed in a god.
- A Eurobarometer opinion poll in 2010 reported that 37% of UK citizens "believed there is a god", 33% believe there is "some sort of spirit or life force" and 25% answered "I don't believe there is any sort of spirit, God or life force".
- The 2008 European Social Survey suggests that 46.94% of UK citizens never pray and 18.96% pray daily.
- A survey in 2007 suggested that 42% of adults resident in the United Kingdom prayed, with one in six praying on a daily basis.
The disparity between the 2001 census data and the above polls has been put down to both the decline in religious adherence in the United Kingdom since 2001 and a phenomenon of cultural religiosity, whereby many who do not believe in gods still identify with a religion because of its role in their upbringing or its importance to their family.
"Do you consider yourself as belonging to any particular religion or denomination?"
|Ethnic group||Christian||Buddhist||Hindu||Jewish||Muslim||Sikh||Other||No religion||Not stated|
|Christian denominations in the UK|
The United Kingdom was formed by the union of previously independent states from 1707, and consequently most of the largest religious groups do not have UK-wide organisational structures. While some groups have separate structures for the individual countries of the United Kingdom, others may have a single structure covering England and Wales or Great Britain. Similarly, due to the relatively recent creation of Northern Ireland in 1921, most major religious groups in Northern Ireland are organised on an all-Ireland basis.
Church of England
In England, the Church of England is the established church. It is also the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The Scottish Episcopal Church, which is part of the Anglican Communion (but not a 'daughter church' of the Church of England), dates from the final establishment of Presbyterianism in Scotland in 1690, when it split from the Church of Scotland. In the 1920s, the Church in Wales became disestablished and independent from the Church of England, but remains in the Anglican Communion.
The Roman Catholic Church has separate national organisations for England and Wales, for Scotland and for Ireland, which means there is no single hierarchy for Roman Catholicism in the United Kingdom. The Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales is the second largest Christian church with around five million members, mainly in England. There is however a single apostolic nuncio to Great Britain, presently Archbishop Antonio Mennini. The Roman Catholic Church in Scotland is Scotland's second largest Christian church, representing a sixth of the population. The Apostolic Nuncio to the whole of Ireland (both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland) is Giuseppe Leanza. Eastern Rite Catholics in the United Kingdom are served by their own clergy and do not belong to the Roman Catholic dioceses but are still in full communion with the Bishop of Rome.
Presbyterianism and Congregationalism
In Scotland, the Church of Scotland (informally known by its Scots language name, "the Kirk"), is recognised as the national church. It is not subject to state control and the British monarch is an ordinary member, required to swear an oath to "maintain and preserve the Protestant Religion and Presbyterian Church Government" upon his or her accession. Splits in the Church of Scotland, especially in the 19th century, led to the creation of various other Presbyterian churches in Scotland, including the Free Church of Scotland, which claims to be the constitutional continuator of the Church in Scotland and was founded in 1843. The Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland was formed in 1893 by some who left the Free Church over alleged weakening of her position and likewise claims to be the spiritual descendant of the Scottish Reformation. The Evangelical Presbyterian Church in England and Wales was founded in the late 1980s and declared themselves to be a Presbytery in 1996. As of 2013[update] they had ten churches. The Presbyterian Church in Ireland is the largest Protestant denomination and second largest church in Northern Ireland. The Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster was founded on 17 March 1951 by the cleric and politician, Ian Paisley. It has about 60 churches in Northern Ireland. The Presbyterian Church of Wales seceded from the Church of England in 1811 and formally formed itself into a separate body in 1823. The Non-subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland has 31 congregations in Northern Ireland, with the first Presbytery being formed in Antrim in 1725.
The United Reformed Church (URC), a union of Presbyterian and Congregational churches, consists of about 1,500 congregations in England, Scotland and Wales. There are about 600 Congregational churches in the United Kingdom. In England there are three main groups, the Congregational Federation, the Evangelical Fellowship of Congregational Churches, and about 100 Congregational churches that are loosely federated with other congregations in the Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches, or are unaffiliated. In Scotland the churches are mostly member of the Congregational Federation and in Wales which traditionally has a larger number of Congregationalists, most are members of the Union of Welsh Independents.
The Methodist movement traces its origin to the evangelical awakening in the 18th century. The Methodist Church, which has congregations throughout Great Britain, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, Malta and Gibraltar, has around 290,000 members, and 5,900 churches, though only around 3,000 members in 50 congregations are in Scotland. In the 1960s, it made ecumenical overtures to the Church of England, aimed at church unity. Formally, these failed when they were rejected by the Church of England's General Synod in 1972. However, conversations and co-operation continued, leading on 1 November 2003 to the signing of a covenant between the two churches.
The Methodist Church in Ireland covers the whole of the island of Ireland, including Northern Ireland where it is the fourth-largest denomination.
The Baptist Union of Great Britain, despite its name, covers just England and Wales. There is a separate Baptist Union of Scotland and the Association of Baptist Churches in Ireland is an all-Ireland organisation.
Charismatic and pentecostal
Assemblies of God in Great Britain are part of the World Assemblies of God Fellowship with over 600 churches in Great Britain. Assemblies of God Ireland cover the whole of the island of Ireland, including Northern Ireland. The Apostolic Church commenced in the early part of the 20th century in South Wales and now has over 110 churches across the United Kingdom. Elim Pentecostal Church as of 2013[update] had over 500 churches across the United Kingdom.
There is also a growing number of independent, charismatic churches that encourage Pentecostal practices as part of their worship. These are broadly grouped together as the British New Church Movement and could number up to 400,000 members. The phenomenon of immigrant churches and congregations that began with the arrival of the SS Empire Windrush from the West Indies in 1948 stands as a unique trend. West Indian congregations that started from this time include the Church of God, New Testament Assembly and New Testament Church of God.
Africans began to arrive in the early 1980s and established their own congregations. Foremost among these are Matthew Ashimolowo from Nigeria and his Kingsway International Christian Centre in London that may be the largest church in Western Europe.
Russian Orthodox Church: the Diocese of Sourozh covers Great Britain and Ireland. Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia also has a diocese that covers Great Britain and Ireland. Greek Orthodox Church: Archdiocese of Thyateira and Great Britain, led by Archbishop Gregorios, that covers England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland as well as Malta. The Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch has 15 parishes and 7 missions within the Deanery of the United Kingdom and Ireland. Serbian Orthodox Church: the Diocese of Britain and Scandinavia has nine parishes in the United Kingdom and missions in Dublin and Malta.
The Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria has two regional Dioceses in the United Kingdom: the Diocese of Ireland, Scotland, North East England and its Affiliated Areas is led by Bishop Antony of Newcastle and the Diocese of the Midlands and its Affiliated Areas is led by Bishop Missael of Birmingham. There is also (part of the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate) the British Orthodox Church, (covering the British Isles) which is led by Metropolitan Seraphim of Glastonbury. In addition, there is one General Bishop in Stevenage, Bishop Angaelos. There are many Coptic Orthodox Churches in the United Kingdom that are directly the responsibility of His Holiness Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria. There is also the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church, the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church and the Armenian Apostolic Church in London.
Other Trinitarian denominations
The Britain Yearly Meeting is the umbrella body for the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) in England, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Isles and the Isle of Man. There are 25,000 worshippers with about 400 local meetings. Northern Ireland comes under the umbrella of the Ireland Yearly Meeting. Other denominations and groups include the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the Seventh Day Baptists, the Plymouth Brethren, and Newfrontiers,
Non Trinitarian denominations
The first missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints to proselyte in the British Isles arrived in 1837. By 1900 as many as 100,000 converts had joined the faith, but most of these early members soon emigrated to the United States to join the main body of the church. From the 1950s emigration to the United States began to be discouraged and local congregations grew more rapidly. Today the church claims just over 186,000 members across the United Kingdom, in over 330 local congregations, known as 'wards' or 'branches'. The church also maintains two temples in England, the first opening in the London area in 1958, and the second completed in 1998 in Preston and known as the Preston England Temple. Preston is also the site of the first preaching by LDS missionaries in 1837, and is home to the oldest continually existing Latter Day Saint congregation anywhere in the world. Restored 1994–2000, the Gadfield Elm Chapel in Worcestershire is the oldest extant chapel of the LDS Church.
Other Non Trinitarian denominations
Jehovah's Witnesses had 135,823 publishers in the United Kingdom in 2011. The General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches is the umbrella organisation for Unitarian, Free Christian and other liberal religious congregations in the United Kingdom. The Unitarian Christian Association was formed in 1991.
It was against the law to be a Muslim in Britain until the Trinitarian Act in 1812[better source needed]. Estimates in 2009 suggested a total of about 2.4 million Muslims over all the United Kingdom. According to Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, the number of Muslims in Britain could be up to 2.9 million. The vast majority of Muslims in the United Kingdom live in England and Wales: of 1,591,126 Muslims recorded at the 2001 Census, 1,546,626 were living in England and Wales, where they form 3% of the population; 42,557 were living in Scotland, forming 0.8% of the population; and 1,943 were living in Northern Ireland. Between 2001 and 2009 the Muslim population increased roughly 10 times faster than the rest of society.
Most Muslim immigrants to the United Kingdom came from former colonies. The biggest groups of Muslims are of Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Indian origin, with the remainder coming from Muslim-dominated areas such as Southwest Asia, Somalia, Malaysia, and Indonesia. During the 18th century, lascars (sailors) who worked for the British East India Company settled in port towns with local wives. These numbered only 24,037 in 1891 but 51,616 on the eve of World War I. Naval cooks, including Sake Dean Mahomet, also came from what is now the Sylhet Division of Bangladesh. From the 1950s onwards, the growing Muslim population has led to a number of notable Mosques being established, including Manchester Central Mosque, East London Mosque, London Markaz, London Central Mosque. According to Kevin Brice, a researcher at the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David, thousands convert to Islam annually and there are approximately 100,000 converts to Islam in Britain, where they run two mosques.
According to a Labour Force Survey estimate, the total number of Muslims in Great Britain in 2008 was 2,422,000, around 4% of the total population. Between 2004 and 2008, the Muslim population grew by more than 500,000. In 2010, The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life estimated 2,869,000 Muslims in Great Britain. The largest age-bracket within the British Muslim population were those under the age of 4, at 301,000 in September 2008. The Muslim Council of Britain is an umbrella organisation for many local, regional and specialist Islamic organisations in the United Kingdom, although it is disputed how representative this organisation is of British Muslims as a whole.
The Jewish Naturalisation Act, enacted in 1753, permitted the naturalisation of foreign Jews, but was repealed the next year. The first graduate from the University of Glasgow who was openly-known to be Jewish was in 1787. Unlike their English contemporaries, Scottish students were not required to take a religious oath. In 1841 Isaac Lyon Goldsmid was made baronet, the first Jew to receive a hereditary title. The first Jewish Lord Mayor of the City of London, Sir David Salomons, was elected in 1855, followed by the 1858 emancipation of the Jews. On 26 July 1858, Lionel de Rothschild was finally allowed to sit in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom when the law restricting the oath of office to Christians was changed. (Benjamin Disraeli, a baptised, teenage convert to Christianity of Jewish parentage, was already an MP at this time and rose to become Prime Minister in 1874.) In 1884 Nathan Mayer Rothschild, 1st Baron Rothschild became the first Jewish member of the British House of Lords; again Disraeli was already a member.
British Jews number around 300,000 with the United Kingdom having the fifth largest Jewish community worldwide. However, this figure did not include Jews who identified 'by ethnicity only' in England and Wales or Scottish Jews who identified as Jewish by upbringing but held no current religion. A report in August 2007 by University of Manchester historian Dr Yaakov Wise stated that 75% of all births in the Jewish community were to ultra-orthodox, Haredi parents, and that the increase of ultra-orthodox Jewry has led to a significant rise in the proportion of British Jews who are ultra-orthodox. However various studies suggest that within some Jewish communities and particularly in some strictly Orthodox areas, many residents ignored the voluntary question on religion following the advice of their religious leaders resulting in a serious undercount, therefore it is impossible to give an accurate number on the total UK Jewish population. It may be even more than double the official estimates, heavily powered by the very high birth rate of orthodox families and British people who are Jewish by origin but not religion; as it currently stands, the Jewish as ethnicity section is not documented on the census.
The Bahá'í Faith in the United Kingdom has a historical connection with the earliest phases of the Bahá'í Faith starting in 1845 and has had a major effect on the development of communities of the religion in far flung nations around the world. It is estimated that between 1951 and 1993, Bahá'ís from the United Kingdom settled in 138 countries.
The earliest Buddhist influence on Britain came through its imperial connections with South East Asia, and as a result the early connections were with the Theravada traditions of Burma, Thailand, and Sri Lanka. The tradition of study resulted in the foundation of the Pali Text Society, which undertook the task of translating the Pali Canon of Buddhist texts into English. Buddhism as a path of practise was pioneered by the Theosophists, Madame Blavatsky and Colonel Olcott, and in 1880 they became the first Westerners to receive the refuges and precepts, the ceremony by which one traditionally becomes a Buddhist.
In 1924 London's Buddhist Society was founded, and in 1926 the Theravadin London Buddhist Vihara. The rate of growth was slow but steady through the century, and the 1950s saw the development of interest in Zen Buddhism. In 1967 Kagyu Samyé Ling Monastery and Tibetan Centre, now the largest Tibetan Buddhist centre in Western Europe, was founded in Scotland. The first home-grown Buddhist movement was also founded in 1967, the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order (now the Triratna Buddhist Community). There are some Sōka Gakkai groups in the United Kingdom.
Hinduism was the religion of 558,810 people in Great Britain according to the 2001 census but an estimate in a British newspaper in 2007 has put the figure as high as 1.5 Million. One Non-governmental organisation estimated as of 2007 that there are 800,000 Hindus in the United Kingdom. Although most British Hindus live in England, with half living in London alone, small communities also exist in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
As of 2006, there are around 25,000 Jains in the United Kingdom.
One of the first Jain settlers, Champat Rai Jain, was in England during 1892-1897 to study law. He established the Rishabh Jain Lending Library in 1930. Later, he translated several Jain texts into English.
Sikhism was recorded as the religion of 336,149 people in the United Kingdom at the time of the 2001 Census. While England is home to the majority of Sikhs in the United Kingdom, small communities also exist in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
The first recorded Sikh settler in the United Kingdom was Maharaja Duleep Singh, dethroned and exiled in 1849 at the age of 14, after the Anglo-Sikh wars. The first Sikh Gurdwara (temple) was established in 1911, in Putney, London. The first wave of Sikh migration came in the 1950s, mostly of men from the Punjab seeking work in industries such as foundries and textiles. These new arrivals mostly settled in London, Birmingham and West Yorkshire. Thousands of Sikhs from East Africa followed.
In the 2001 census, 390,127 individuals (0.7 per cent of total respondents) in England and Wales self-identified as followers of the Jedi faith, created as part of the narrative structure of the Star Wars science-fiction movie series. This Jedi census phenomenon followed an internet campaign that stated, incorrectly, that the Jedi belief system would receive official government recognition as a religion if it received enough support in the census. An email in support of the campaign, quoted by BBC News, invited people to 'do it because you love Star Wars ... or just to annoy people'.
In the 2001 Census, a total of 42,262 people from England, Scotland, and Wales declared themselves to be pagans or adherents of Wicca. However, other surveys have led to estimates of around 250,000 or even higher.
In the United Kingdom, census figures do not allow an accurate breakdown of traditions within the Pagan heading, as a campaign by the Pagan Federation before the 2001 Census encouraged Wiccans, Heathens, Druids and others all to use the same write-in term 'Pagan' in order to maximise the numbers reported. For the first time, respondents were able to write in an affiliation not covered by the checklist of common religions, and a total of 42,262 people from England, Scotland and Wales declared themselves to be Pagans by this method. These figures were not immediately analysed by the Office for National Statistics, but were released after an application by the Pagan Federation of Scotland.
During the Iron Age, Celtic polytheism was the predominant religion in the area now known as England. Neo-Druidism grew out of the Celtic revival in 18th century Romanticism. A 2012 Druid analysis estimates that there are roughly 11,000 Druids in Britain.
Religion and society
Religion and politics
Though the main political parties are secular, the formation of the Labour Party was influenced by Christian socialism and by leaders from a nonconformist background, such as Keir Hardie. On the other hand, the Church of England has sometimes been nicknamed "the Conservative Party at prayer".
Some minor parties are explicitly 'religious' in ideology: two 'Christian' parties – the Christian Party and the Christian Peoples Alliance, fielded joint candidates at the 2009 European Parliament elections and increased their share of the vote to come eighth, with 249,493 votes (1.6 percent of total votes cast), and in London, where the CPA had three councillors, the Christian parties picked up 51,336 votes (2.9 percent of the vote), up slightly from the 45,038 gained in 2004.
The Church of England is represented in the UK Parliament by 26 bishops (the Lords Spiritual) and the British monarch is a member of the church (required under Article 2 of the Treaty of Union) as well as its Supreme Governor. The Lords Spiritual have seats in the House of Lords and debate government policies affecting the whole of the United Kingdom. The Church of England also has the right to draft legislative measures (related to religious administration) through the General Synod that can then be passed into law by Parliament. The Prime Minister, regardless of personal beliefs, plays a key role in the appointment of Church of England bishops, although in July 2007 Gordon Brown proposed reforms of the Prime Minister's ability to affect Church of England appointments.
Religion and education
Religious Education and Collective Worship are compulsory in many state schools in England and Wales by virtue of clauses 69 and 70 of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998. Clause 71 of the act gives parents the right to withdraw their children from Religious Education and Collective Worship and parents should be informed of their right in accordance with guidelines published by the Department for Education; "a school should ensure parents or carers are informed of this right". The content of the religious education is decided locally by the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education.
In England and Wales, a significant number of state funded schools are faith schools with the vast majority Christian (mainly either of Church of England or Roman Catholic) though there are also Jewish, Muslim and Sikh faith schools. Faith schools follow the same national curriculum as state schools, though with the added ethos of the host religion. Until 1944 there was no requirement for state schools to provide religious education or worship, although most did so. The Education Act 1944 introduced a requirement for a daily act of collective worship and for religious education but did not define what was allowable under these terms. The act contained provisions to allow parents to withdraw their children from these activities and for teachers to refuse to participate. The Education Reform Act 1988 introduced a further requirement that the majority of collective worship be "wholly or mainly of a broadly Christian character". According to a 2003 report from the Office for Standards in Education, a "third of governing bodies do not fulfil their statutory duties adequately, sometimes because of a failure to pursue thoroughly enough such matters as arranging a daily act of collective worship." However, in honour of the 400th anniversary of the Authorized King James Version, in 2012, the government is distributing a copy of the Bible to all primary and secondary schools.
In Scotland, the majority of schools are non-denominational, but separate Roman Catholic schools, with an element of control by the Roman Catholic Church, are provided within the state system. The Education (Scotland) Act 1980 imposes a statutory duty on all local authorities to provide religious education and religious observance in Scottish schools. These are currently defined by the Scottish Government's Curriculum for Excellence (2005).
Northern Ireland has a highly segregated education system. 95% of pupils attend either maintained (Catholic) schools or controlled schools, which are open to children of all faiths and none, though in practise most pupils are from the Protestant community.
Religion and prison
Prisoners are given religious freedom and privileges while in prison. This includes access to a chaplain or religious advisor, authorised religious reading materials, ability to change faith, as well as other privileges. Several faith-based outreach programmes that provide faith promoting guidance and counselling.
Every three months, the Ministry of Justice collects data, including religious affiliation, of UK prisoners and is published as the Offender Management Caseload Statistics. This data is then compiled into reports and published in the House of Commons library. In June 2011 the prison population of England and Wales was recorded as 50% Christian, 13% Muslim, 2% Buddhist, 3% other religions and 31% no religion.
Religion and the media
The Communications Act 2003 requires certain broadcasters in the United Kingdom to carry a "suitable quantity and range of programmes" dealing with religion and other beliefs, as part of their public service broadcasting. Prominent examples of religious programming include the BBC television programme Songs of Praise, aired on a Sunday evening with an average weekly audience of 2.5 million, and the Thought for the Day slot on BBC Radio 4. Channels also offer documentaries on, or from the perspective of a criticism of organised religion. A significant example is Richard Dawkins' two-part Channel 4 documentary, The Root of all Evil?. Open disbelief of, or even mockery of organised religion, is not regarded as a taboo in the British media, though it has occasionally provoked controversy. British comedy has a history of parody on the subject of religion.
Interfaith dialogue, tolerance, religious discrimination and secularism
- Interfaith dialogue
The Interfaith Network for the United Kingdom encompasses the main faith organisations of the United Kingdom, either directly with denominational important representatives or through joint bodies for these denominations, promotes local interfaith cooperation, promotes understanding between faiths and convenes meetings and conferences where social and religious questions of concern to the different faith communities can be examined together, including meetings of the Network’s ‘Faith Communities Consultative Forum’.
Ecumenical friendship and cooperation has gradually developed between Christian denominations and where inter-sect prejudice exists this has via education and employment policy been made a pressing public matter in dealing with its two prominent examples – sectarianism in Glasgow and Northern Ireland - where segregation is declining.
- Tolerance and Religious Discrimination
In the early 21st century, the Racial and Religious Hatred Act 2006 made it an offence in England and Wales to incite hatred against a person on the grounds of their religion. The common law offences of blasphemy and blasphemous libel were abolished with the coming into effect of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 on 8 July 2008.
2005-2010 polls have shown that public opinion in the United Kingdom generally tends towards a suspicion or outright disapproval of radical or evangelical religiosity, though moderate groups and individuals are rarely subject to less favourable treatment from society or employers.
The Equality Act 2010 prohibits discrimination against people on the basis of religion, in the supply of goods and services and selection for employment, subject to very limited exceptions (such as the right of schools and religious institutions to appoint paid ministers).
There is no strict separation of church and state in the United Kingdom. Accordingly most public officials may display the most common identifiers of a major religion in the course of their duties – for example, turbans. Chaplains are provided in the armed forces (see Royal Army Chaplains' Department) and in prisons.
Although school uniform codes are generally drawn up flexibly enough to accommodate compulsory items of religious dress, some schools have banned wearing the crucifix in a necklace, arguing that to do so is not a requirement of Christianity where they prohibit all other necklaces. Post-adolescence, the wearing of a necklace is permitted in some F.E. colleges who permit religious insignia necklaces on a wider basis, which are without exception permitted at universities.
In 2011 two judges of the Court of Appeal of England and Wales upheld previous statements in the country's jurisprudence that the (non-canon) laws of the United Kingdom 'do not include Christianity'. Therefore a Local Authority was acting lawfully in denying a Christian married couple the right to foster care because of stated negative views on homosexuality. In terms of the rights recognised "in the case of fostering arrangements at least, the right of homosexuals to equality should take precedence over the right of Christians to manifest their beliefs and moral values."
Main religious leaders
- The Queen is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England, with the Archbishops of Canterbury and York below her.
- The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland presides over the annual Assembly, but does not lead, the Church of Scotland
- The Primus of Scotland is the presiding bishop of the Scottish Episcopal Church.
- The Orthodox Church coordinates its activities and life across several jurisdictions through the Assembly of Bishops of the British Isles; the Archbishop of Thyateira and Great Britain presiding.
- The Archbishop of Westminster is the leader of the Roman Catholic bishops of England and Wales
- The de facto head of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland is the most senior archbishop currently Keith O'Brien, Archbishop and Metropolitan of St Andrews and Edinburgh (see Bishops' Conference of Scotland)
- The Primate of All Ireland exercises his ecclesiastical jurisdiction in Northern Ireland as well as the Republic of Ireland
- The Archbishop of Wales is one of the six diocesan bishops of the Church in Wales, chosen by his colleagues to hold the higher designation in addition to his own diocese
- The Chief Rabbi is the title of the leader of Orthodox Judaism in the Commonwealth.
- The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland presides over, but does not lead, the Church.
- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is led by the Europe Area Presidency. The current area president is Elder Erich W. Kopischke with Elder Gérald J. Caussé and Elder José A. Teixeira as first and second counsellors respectively.
Notable places of worship
- Bevis Marks Synagogue – Jewish
- Birmingham Central Mosque – Islamic
- Birmingham Orthodox Cathedral – Greek Orthodox
- Brompton Oratory – Roman Catholic
- Canterbury Cathedral – Church of England
- Crathie Kirk – Church of Scotland
- Holy Trinity Cathedral, Down – Church of Ireland
- Glasgow Cathedral – Church of Scotland
- Gurdwara Sri Guru Singh Sabha – Sikh
- Kingsway International Christian Centre – Charismatic
- London Central Mosque – Islamic
- London England Temple – Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
- Manchester Central Mosque – Islamic
- Metropolitan Tabernacle – Baptist
- Neasden Temple – Hindu
- North London Central Mosque – Islamic
- Preston England Temple – Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
- Shah Jahan Mosque – Islamic
- St Anne's Cathedral, Belfast – Church of Ireland
- St Chad's Cathedral, Birmingham – Roman Catholic
- St Columb's Cathedral, Derry – Church of Ireland
- St David's Cathedral – Church in Wales
- St Eugene's Cathedral, Derry – Roman Catholic
- St Lazar's Church, Bournville – Serbian Orthodox
- St Mary's Cathedral, Edinburgh – Catholic
- St Mary's Cathedral, Edinburgh – Scottish Episcopal
- St Patrick's Cathedral, Armagh – Roman Catholic
- St Patrick's Cathedral, Armagh – Church of Ireland
- St Paul's Cathedral – Church of England
- St Peter's Cathedral, Belfast – Roman Catholic
- Taplow Court – Buddhist, Soka Gakkai International
- Westminster Abbey – Church of England
- Westminster Cathedral – Roman Catholic
- Westminster Central Hall – Methodist
- York Minster – Church of England
- Religion by country
- Religion in England
- Religion in Scotland
- Religion in Wales
- Religion in Northern Ireland
- Religion in Europe
- Religion in the European Union
- Religion in the Republic of Ireland
- Monasticism in the United Kingdom
- "From Paganism to Christianity," Lullinstone Roman Villa, English Heritage, accessed 15 June 2012.
- Sacred Nation, BBC Radio 4 documentary
- Cannon, John, ed. (2nd edn., 2009). A Dictionary of British History. Oxford University Press. p. 144. ISBN 0-19-955037-9.
- The History of the Church of England. The Church of England. Retrieved 23 November 2008.
- "Queen and Church of England". British Monarchy Media Centre. Archived from the original on 8 October 2006. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "Queen and the Church". The British Monarchy (Official Website). Archived from the original on 7 June 2011.
- "How we are organised". Church of Scotland. Archived from the original on 7 June 2011.
- G. Parsons, Religion in Victorian Britain: Traditions (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1988), ISBN 0-7190-2511-7, p. 156.
- G. Parsons, Religion in Victorian Britain: Traditions (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1988), ISBN 0-7190-2511-7, p. 71.
- Weller, Paul (2005). Time for a Change: Reconfiguring Religion, State, and Society. London: Continuum. pp. 79–80. ISBN 0-567-08487-6.
- Yilmaz, Ihsan (2005). Muslim Laws, Politics and Society in Modern Nation States: Dynamic Legal Pluralisms in England, Turkey, and Pakistan. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing. pp. 55–6. ISBN 0-7546-4389-1.
- Brown, Callum G. (2006). Religion and Society in Twentieth-Century Britain. Harlow: Pearson Education. p. 291. ISBN 0-582-47289-X.
- Norris, Pippa; Inglehart, Ronald (2004). Sacred and Secular: Religion and Politics Worldwide. Cambridge University Press. p. 84. ISBN 0-521-83984-X.
- Fergusson, David (2004). Church, State and Civil Society. Cambridge University Press. p. 94. ISBN 0-521-52959-X.
- "2011 Census: KS209EW Religion, local authorities in England and Wales". ons.gov.uk. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
- "Scotland's Census 2011: Table KS209SCa". scotlandcensus.gov.uk. Retrieved 26 September 2013.
- "Census 2011: Religion: KS211NI (administrative geographies)". nisra.gov.uk. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
- "Census 2011: Religion - Full Detail: QS218NI - Northern Ireland". nisra.gov.uk. Retrieved 1 October 2013.
- "Religion (2001 Census)". data.gov.uk. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
- "Summary: Religious Group Demographics". scotland.gov.uk. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
- "Census 2001: Religion (administrative geographies)". nisra.gov.uk. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
- "Table KS07c: Religion (full list with 10 or more persons)". nisra.gov.uk. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
- "UK Census". ONS. 2012. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "Labour Force Survey". ONS. 2012. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "British Social Attitudes". NatCen. 2012. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "European Social Survey". Norwegian Social Science Data Services. 2012. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "2001 Census England". ONS. 2001. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "2001 Census Wales". ONS. 2001. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "2001 Census England and Wales Religion Data". ONS. 2001. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "2001 Census Scotland". ONS. 2001. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "2001 Census Scotland Religion Data". Office of the Chief Statistician. 2005. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "Government Report On Religion". UK Government. 2012. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "BSA Questionnaire". BSA. 2011. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "BSA Table 1983–2010". BSA. 2010. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "ESS Data Downloads". ESS. 2010. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- PDF (102 KB) Retrieved on 7 May 2012
- "NSS response to 2001 census". NSS. 2005. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "ANALYSIS OF RELIGION IN THE 2001 CENSUS". Scottish Government. 2005. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- PDF (361 KB) Retrieved on 12 March 2012.
- "Ipsos MORI 2003". Ipsos MORI. 2003. Retrieved 6 May 2012.
- "Focus on Religion – Questions on religion". Office for National Statistics. 11 October 2004. Retrieved 11 September 2007.
- Census 2001 – Ethnicity and religion in England and Wales. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 30 April 2008 (see "Religion (table 3)")
- Jedi – the Growth of a 'Religion'. BBC. 22 June 2005. Retrieved 30 April 2008
- "BSA 2009 Chart". Retrieved 25 April 2012.
- "BSA 2009 Table". Retrieved 25 April 2012.
- "United Kingdom Census 2001 – Religion". Office For National Statistics. 2004. Retrieved 2 May 2012.
- "Tearfund Survey 2007" (PDF). Retrieved 5 May 2007.
- Peach, Ceri, "United Kingdom, a major transformation of the religious landscape", in H. Knippenberg. ed. (2005). The Changing Religious Landscape of Europe. Amsterdam: Het Spinhuis. pp. 44–58. ISBN 90-5589-248-3.
- "WhyChurch Attendance Trends". WhyChurch. 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2012.
- "'One in 10' attends church weekly". BBC News. 3 April 2007. Retrieved 1 August 2007.
- "findaproperty report on fate of churches". findaproperty.com. 2002. Retrieved 7 May 2012.
- "Attendance at Anglican services on Christmas eve/Christmas day". University of Manchester – Cathie Marsh centre for census and survey research. 2002.
- "O come, all ye faithful: Church is a big draw at Christmas". Retrieved 13 January 2008.
- Jonathan Wynne-Jones (23 December 2007). "Britain has become a 'Catholic country'". London: Sunday Telegraph. Retrieved 23 December 2007.
- New Study finds mosque goers todouble church attendance by 2040, Christian Today retrieved 4 March 2013
- Muslim Britain, More people attend mosques than Church of England, Islamic Population article retrieved 4 March 2013
- PDF (657 KB) Retrieved on 7 May 2012
- "Special Eurobarometer, biotechnology, page 204" (PDF). Fieldwork: Jan-Feb 2010.
- 40% of adults pray, says survey BBC News, 11 November 2007
- "Religion in the United Kingdom – Diversity, Trends and Decline – Christianity is the Established Religion in the UK". Vexen.co.uk. Retrieved 3 June 2008[dead link]
- "ESS 2010 Data". Retrieved 4 May 2012.
- "Ethnic groups by religion". 2001 Census. Retrieved 28 July 2008.
- Acts of Union 1707 parliament.uk. Retrieved 31 December 2010
- Uniting the kingdom? nationalarchives.gov.uk. Retrieved 31 December 2010
- Making the Act of Union 1707 scottish.parliament.uk. Retrieved 31 December 2010
- "A Brief Introduction to the Scottish Episcopal Church". .scotland.anglican.org. Retrieved 7 June 2010.
- Weller, Paul, Time for a Change: Reconfiguring Religion, State, and Society (London: Continuum, 2005), ISBN 0-567-08487-6, pp. 79–80.
- The Church in England and Wales The Catholic Church of England and Wales. Retrieved 27 November 2008.
- Analysis of Religion in the 2001 Census: Summary Report Scottish Executive – Retrieved 6 December 2008
- "Religion in Scotland". Scotland.com. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "Organisation – Church of Scotland". Church of Scotland. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "About". Evangelical Presbyterian Church in England and Wales. Retrieved 5 September 2008.
- "Churches". Non-subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland. Retrieved 5 September 2008.
- "History". Non-subscribing Presbyterian Church of Ireland. Retrieved 5 September 2008.
- About us urc.org.uk. Retrieved 27 July 2010.
- "World Council of Churches – Methodist Church of Great Britain". 2006. Retrieved 23 September 2012.
- "An Anglican-Methodist Covenant". Joint Implementation Commission of the Church of England and the Methodist Church of Great Britain.
- "BBC – Religions – Christianity: Salvation Army". BBC. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- THE BAPTIST FAMILY baptist.org.uk. Retrieved 4 May 2009.
- "BBC – Religions – Christianity: Pentecostalism". BBC. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- William W. Kay, Apostolic Networks in Great Britain, Milton Keynes: Paternoster, 2007.
- "Welcome". Russian Orthodox Diocese of Sourozh. Archived from the original on 23 June 2008. Retrieved 5 September 2008.
- "Diocese of Great Britain and Ireland". The Diocese of Great Britain and Ireland. Retrieved 8 January 2010.
- "Current Hierarchs of the Archdiocese of Great Britain". Orthodox Research Institute. 2008. Retrieved 5 September 2008.
- "Parishes, Missions and Clergy". Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch Deanery of the United Kingdom and Ireland. 2010. Retrieved 8 January 2010.
- "BBC – Religions – Christianity: Exclusive Brethren". BBC. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "Newfrontiers: History". newfrontierstogether.org. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "Country Profile: United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales)". LDS Newsroom. LDS Church.
- "History of the church in the UK". lds.org.uk. LDS Church.
- "Do you know where the oldest Mormon chapel in the world is?". BBC News. 30 March 2005.
- 2012 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses. Page 44.
- British and Muslim?, Abdal Hakim Murad
- Islam in the UK – population figures
- Muslims rise while Christians fall in Britain
- Islamophobia 'acceptable' in UK, AlJazeera English, 20 January 2011
- ANALYSIS OF RELIGION IN THE 2001 CENSUS: Summary Report, Scottish Executive
- Northern Ireland Census 2001 Key Statistics
- Muslim population 'rising 10 times faster than rest of society' 30 January 2009, Richard Kerbaj, The Sunday Times
- "Muslims in Britain". mywf.org.uk. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "Born Abroad – Countries of birth". BBC Online. 7 September 2005. Retrieved 16 February 2008.
- Fisher, Michael Herbert (2006). Counterflows to Colonialism. Orient Blackswan. pp. 111–9, 129–30, 140, 154–6, 160–8, 181. ISBN 81-7824-154-4
- Ansari, Humayun (2004). The Infidel Within: The History of Muslims in Britain, 1800 to the Present. C. Hurst & Co. Publishers. p. 37. ISBN 1-85065-685-1
- "Curry house founder is honoured". BBC News. 29 September 2005. Retrieved 9 October 2008.
- http://www.economist.com/news/britain/21578099-british-strand-islam-emerging-more-people-become-converts-changing-my-religion Muslim converts: Changing my religion
- Kerbaj, Richard (30 January 2009). "Muslim population 'rising 10 times faster than rest of society'". The Times (London). Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- David Cameron must face the challenge of Islamisation
- London's Jewish Museum reopens after major facelift, USA Today'.' Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Majority of Jews will be Ultra-Orthodox by 2050". University of Manchester. 23 July 2007. Archived from the original on 17 October 2007. Retrieved 31 August 2007.
- "U.K. Bahá'í Heritage Site – The Bahá'í Faith in the United Kingdom – A Brief History". Archived from the original on 26 Feb 2008.[dead link]
- UK 2001 census
- Curtis, Polly (29 November 2007). "Hindu school is first to make vegetarianism a condition of entry". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010.
- "Hinduism in Britain today". International Society for Krishna Consciousness. Retrieved 22 April 2007.
- Minority religions mainly in London. National Statistics. Retrieved 5 June 2006.
- "Religions - Jainism: Jainism at a glance". BBC. Retrieved 2013-09-14.
- "on www.jainsamaj.org ( Jainism, Ahimsa News, Religion, Non-Violence, Culture, Vegetarianism, Meditation, India. )". Jainsamaj.org. Retrieved 2013-09-14.
- The Jain Centre, Leicester. Retrieved 29 October 2008.
- Kurt Titze, Klaus Bruhn, Jainism: a pictorial guide to the religion of non-violence, p. 264
- 2001 Census, Office for National Statistics
- "390,000 Jedis There Are But did hoax campaign boost response in teens and 20s?", Office for National Statistics, 13 February 2003. Retrieved 15 February 2011.
- Evans, Dr. David (2007). The History of British Magic After Crowley. Oxford: Hidden Publishing. pp. 70–81. ISBN 978-0-9555237-0-0.
- Jenny Percival. Pagan prisoners allowed twig wands in cells. Scotland on Sunday. 11 May 2008. Retrieved 14 February 2009. Citation: "There are estimated to be one million Pagans in Britain – around 300 of whom are in prison. There are about 30,000 in Scotland."
- "Pagans and the Scottish Census of 2001". ScottisPF.org. Retrieved 7 April 2012.
- UK 2011 CENSUS PUBLISHES FIGURES FOR DRUIDS retrieved 12 January 2012
- Eric J Evans
- CPA Party People cpaparty.org.uk. Retrieved 12 July 2009.
- Christians aim to build on vote BBC News, 8 June 2009
- "The Monarchy Today > Queen and State > Queen and Church > Queen and Church of England". Cached at the Internet Archive. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- "General Synod". Church of England. Retrieved 5 June 2010.
- Report, from the Church Times
- "School Standards and Framework Act 1998". legislation.gov.uk. 1998. Retrieved 15 June 2012.
- PDF (885 KB) Retrieved on 15 June 2012
- Education Reform Act 1988 – Chapter I -The Curriculum – pt 6 Retrieved on 15 October 2007
- "Standards and Quality 2002/03 The Annual Report of Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Schools" (.pdf). UK Government – Office for Standards in Education. 2003. Retrieved 17 January 2012. "Governing bodies are effective in fulfilling their responsibilities in two thirds of schools.This is reflected in their contribution to shaping the direction of the school and their understanding of its strengths and weaknesses. A third of governing bodies do not fulfil their statutory duties adequately, sometimes because of a failure to pursue thoroughly enough such matters as arranging a daily act of collective worship."
- "Schools set to receive a King James Bible from Government". The Christian Institute. 29 November 2011. Retrieved 17 January 2012. "Schools in England are set to receive a copy of the King James Bible from the Government as it marks 400 years of the translation. The Bibles will include a foreword from the Education Secretary Michael Gove, the Times Educational Supplement reported. Mr Gove said the King James Version is "one of the keystones of our shared culture". The Bibles are to be sent to all primary and secondary schools and should be with schools by Easter. Michael Gove praised the King James Version of the Bible for its impact on language and culture, saying: "Some people look at certain battles, or some look at certain parliamentary acts, as hinge moments in history.""
- "Religious Education and Observance", The Scottish Government. Retrieved 19 June 2012.
- british-prisons.co.uk Religious books permitted during cellular confinement
- Ministry of Justice Faith and Pastoral Care for Prisoners
- "Offender management caseload statistics". Ministry of Justice. 2012. Retrieved 15 June 2012.
- "Prison Population Statistics" (PDF). House of Commons Library. Retrieved 29 March 2013.
- "Communications Act 2003". Acts of the United Kingdom Parliament 2003 (21). 17 July 2003. pp. 264(6). Retrieved 1 August 2010.
- BBC Songs of Praise accessed 1 January 2008
- Interfaith Network for the UK List of Members. Retrieved 2013-07-28
- "Mixed picture emerges on British attitudes to religion in public life". Ekklesia. Retrieved 15 November 2010.
- Teen Banned From Wearing Crucifix Sky News, 6 December 2005
- "Churches fear Equality Bill will conflict with faith". BBC News Online. 24 January 2010.
- Ross, Tim (28 February 2011). "Foster parent ban: 'no place' in the law for Christianity, High Court rules". The Daily Telegraph (London).
- Organisation of the Church of England, Church of England website.
- Eurel: sociological and legal data on religions in Europe
- BBC What the World Thinks of God television programme
- Kettell, Steven (2009). "On the Public Discourse of Religion: An Analysis of Christianity in the United Kingdom". Politics and Religion 2 (3): 420–443.
- Church of England
- Church of Scotland
- Presbyterian Church in Ireland
- Church of Ireland (Anglican)
- Church in Wales (Anglican)
- Catholic Church in England and Wales
- Roman Catholic Bishops' Conference of Scotland
- Roman Catholic Church in Ireland
- Assemblies of God of Great Britain
- Evangelical Presbyterian Church in England and Wales
- Free Church of Scotland
- Free Church of Scotland (Continuing)
- Ecumenical Patriarchate
- Russian Orthodox Church in Great Britain and Ireland – Diocese of Sourozh, Patriarchate of Moscow
- Antiochian Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom and Ireland
- Romanian Orthodox Church, London
- the listing of parishes on this website is disputed: Patriarchal Exarchate for Orthodox Parishes of Russian Tradition in Western Europe#Parishes and Communities of the Vicariate