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Children

Volume 488: debated on Wednesday 25 February 2009

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster how many and what proportion of women in the UK have children. (257617)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated February 2009:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your request for information on how many, and what proportion, of women in the UK have children. (257617)

The information requested is only available for women of childbearing age in England and Wales (ages 15-44). The latest year for which figures are available is 2007.

The table below shows for 2007, the estimated number and proportion of women aged between 15 and 44 in England and Wales who have ever had a child.

Estimated number and proportion of women aged 15-44 who have ever had a child, England and Wales, 2007

Number/Percentage

All women

11,127,200

Women who have ever had a child

5,381,000

Proportion of women who have ever had a child

48.4

The proportion of women aged 15-44 in 2007 who have ever had a child is relatively low because many of the women in this age group have not yet started childbearing. For women who have completed their childbearing years (women aged 45 in 2007), 80 per cent are estimated to have had at least one child.

More detailed information showing the proportion of women of childbearing age by number of live-born children, by year of birth of mother and age is published annually for England and Wales in Birth Statistics Series FML Table 10.5.

http://www.statistics.gov.uk/statbase/Product.asp?vlnk=5768