Lincolnshire has seen more than a third of last year’s baby registrations in just four months as a post-pandemic hike in births and marriages results in “another busy and challenging year” for registrars.
Deaths last year were reported to have fallen, however have bounced back at the beginning of this year.
The county council’s Head of Registration and Coroners Services James Chapple told councillors on Tuesday that the end lifting of pandemic restrictions in 2021 and the removal of the majority of the remaining COVID legislation in March this year had seen the service return to pre-pandemic delivery.
“The demand for birth and death quotes and ceremonies continues to remain high and death registrations continue to be prioritised. The service is currently planning for another challenging winter,” he said.
According to a report before the Public Protection and Communities Scrutiny Committee:
- Births rose risen by 2% from 4,464 in 20/21 to 4,549 in 21/22. However, April-July this year saw a 33% increase year-on-year from 1,307 in 2021 to 1,742 in 2022.
- Death registrations decreased by 13.5% between 2020/21-2021/22 with the totals falling from 8,996 to 7,781. It was noted, however, that comparative figures between April-July 2021 and 2022 had seen a 14% rise.
- Meanwhile, there had been more than 2,000 marriage ceremonies conducted between April 2021 and March 2022. In comparison since April this year more than 1,500 ceremonies had already been undertaken and the service was taking bookings as far ahead as summer 2025.
Mr Chapple noted that there were no backlogs and events were being registered in a “timely manor”.
“Deaths are decreasing, births are increasing and marriage is proving very popular for some reason,” chairman Nigel Pepper surmised to laughter from the chamber after hearing the report.
A new IT system which allows residents register births, deaths and marriages using their phones, computers and tablets is also proving popular.
Since launching on August 15 this year, the system has seen a shift to around 79% of birth appointments, 74% of notices and 36% of deaths being booked online.
Further features are planned for later this year, including pre-payment services and online booking and planning of ceremonies.