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Most Britons are not religious, finds latest poll

A new Sunday Times/YouGov survey has shown that 62% of Britons when asked would say they are ‘not religious’, a figure which is consistent with most national polls of the last decade, including a recent Survation poll last November.

In recent years politicians have used claims that Britain is a Christian country, or a country made up mainly of Christians, as justification for policies which give special favour to Christian and other religious organisations, including through support for ‘faith’ schools and for the entrenched position of bishops in our legislature. Most recently, the Department for Communities and Local Government promised £400,000 in public funds exclusively for use in helping to grow ‘places of worship’.

However, recent polls have consistently shown that a majority of Britons are non-religious, and that religious Britons don’t feel that religion is important to their identity. The latest YouGov survey has again shown this to be the case, finding that Christians are a minority within a culturally diverse, multi-belief Britain.

BHA Director of Public Affairs and Campaigns Pavan Dhaliwal commented, ‘Non-religious people come from all walks of life and as this latest poll shows, they continue to make up a greater and greater share of the overall population. Attempts to base policy on a perception that Britain is mostly Christian simply won’t cut it any longer – and politicians will soon find that such policies have little support from the wider public.’

Notes

For further comment or information contact BHA Director of Public Affairs and Campaigns Pavan Dhaliwal at pavan@humanism.org.uk or on 0773 843 5059.

The full data set from YouGov: Sunday Times polling results, April 2014

The British Humanist Association is the national charity working on behalf of non-religious people who seek to live ethical and fulfilling lives on the basis of reason and humanity. It promotes a secular state and equal treatment in law and policy of everyone, regardless of religion or belief.

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