Interesting thoughts on recent figures from the Office for National Statistics.
Figures show that cohabiting couples with children have increased by 30% in the last 10 years, but among those with dependents, the rise of cohabitation has halted and may even been in reverse.
Some say it's down to the "Brangelina effect" - whereby couples with children marry to strengthen the family bond.
New figures from the Office for National Statistics confirm a massive overall shift away from marriage over the last generation, with the number of families headed by cohabiting couples up by 30 per cent in a decade and more than doubling since the mid-1990s. But among those with dependent children, the rise of cohabitation has halted and – if patterns seen in the last year continue – may even have gone into reverse. Family lawyers said it could point to a so-called “Brangelina effect” – characterised by the decision of the Hollywood stars Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, who have six children, to strengthen the family bond by getting married. The Marriage Foundation, the think-tank set up by the High Court judge Sir Paul Coleridge, said the figures underlined the stability of marriage for family life.