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Analysis of the 2011 Census will be posted when available, meantime...
Pagans & the Scottish Census of 2001
The Scottish Census of 2001 set a precedent by including questions on religious identity. This made it possible to hope for the first accurate statistics on the number of Pagans in this country. During 2000 the Pagan Federation (Scotland) was one of many national religious organisations consulted on the form these questions should take, pressing unsuccessfully for a Pagan ‘tick-box’ to be included alongside those provided for Buddhists, the major Christian denominations, Hindus, Jews, Muslims and Sikhs.
In the course of this we learned that our government did not intend to provide a complete analysis of the results. Statistics for the religions provided with ‘tick-boxes’ in the Census form under Q13 and Q14 were to be published as part of the normal census output. Any analysis of religious identity within the Another Religion ‘write-in’ boxes provided on the form would need to be privately commissioned by those seeking the information.
We regarded this as religious discrimination and, between 2000 and 2003, Scottish PF lobbied the General Register Office for Scotland and relevant ministers to have complete statistics on religious identity published as part of the normal Census output. When that failed, Scottish PF presented a petition (PE600) to the Scottish Parliament for a count of the number of Pagan responses to be made and freely published. This was rejected by the Public Petitions Committee on 25th February 2003, although assurances were received that consideration would be given to the possibility of more complete publication of information from the next Census in 2011.
On 18th March 2003, the Scottish Council of the Pagan Federation launched a fund raising campaign to pay for an analysis of the relevant parts of the 2001 Census, estimated at ~?2000. This campaign was very generously supported by the Pagan community both inside and outside the PF. Fund raising was completed by early March 2004, and the statistics obtained on 24th March 2004. The relevant extracts are given below:
PLEASE NOTE: The numbers given for individual Pagan traditions (Wiccan, Druidism, etc.) will significantly underestimate the proportion of Pagans in these traditions. This is because uncertainty regarding access to the data led Scottish PF to advise all Pagans to identify as ‘Pagan’ rather than by individual traditions. They cannot be taken as providing an accurate breakdown of the Scottish Pagan community by tradition.
Q.13 'What religion, religious denomination or body do you belong to?'
'Another Religion' i.e. other than Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim or Sikh.
(Total responses = 24,050)
|Made up of:|
To be absolutely accurate, we should probably add the following three categories to the above total, but they were not included in the list of possible Pagan identification terms Scottish PF Council provided to the GRO and are thus not formally grouped therein. Their inclusion would not significantly affect the figures.
Selected comparisons from Q13 'Another Religion'
Q13 data already published as part of normal Census output
|(Total population of Scotland:||5,062,011)|
Q.14 'Religion of Upbringing?'
'Another Religion'? i.e. other than Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim or Sikh.
(Total responses = 7,077)
|Made up of:|
Selected comparisons from Q14 'Another Religion'
Q14 data already published as part of normal Census output:
[The comparable figure for Pagans in England & Wales in 2001 is 40,332. No figures for Religion of Upbringing are available for England & Wales.]
Source: General Register Office for Scotland, 2001 Census Commissioned Table. Crown copyright 2004. Crown copyright material is reproduced here with the permission of the Controller of HMSO.
The Pagan Federation (Scotland) gratefully acknowledges the unfailing courtesy and helpfulness of the staff of the General Register Office for Scotland in this matter.
The Pagan Federation (Scotland) is deeply appreciative of the dedicated, enthusiastic and generous support shown by so many Pagan groups and individuals across Scotland and beyond in this campaign.
Issued on behalf of the Scottish Council of the Pagan Federation, 25th March 2004.The Pagan Federation (Scotland)
PO Box 14251,