Category: top British girls’ names
The figures for the most popular names in the UK in 2011 have just been released by the Office for National Statistics, containing plenty of surprises and interesting tidbits. For one thing, it seems that despite a lot of cross-pollination, there is still a considerable divide in name popularity across the Atlantic. Just looking at the two top names–which replaced last year’s Olivia and Oliver—there is Amelia, which is #30 in the US, and Harry, which is way down at Number 709 here—although with all those captivating shots of the ebullient prince as a spectator at the Olympics, this could change.
As usual, there is a generous infusion of celebrity influence, from the royal realm, show biz and sports. Amelia for example, was quite probably given a bounce by the 2011 X-Factor finalist Amelia Lily. Led by Alfie in the top five, the nickname name trend continues for both girls and boys—Evie, Ellie, Millie, Rosie, Archie, Tommy, Ollie, and Bobby being among the hottest.
At the beginning of this year, the UK ‘s Office for National Statistics let it be known that they wouldn’t be issuing their annual lists of most popular names due to recessional budget cuts, and a collective moan was heard across the name-o-sphere. (Can you imagine what would happen if our Social Security list didn’t appear one Mother’s Day?)
Well, I don’t know what happened–maybe the uproar was too deafening–but suddenly, nine months later, their lists of top 100 boys and 100 girls names in England and Wales have now materialized. Definitely a case of better late than never.
Once upon a time I used to think that, since we share the same language, the Yanks and the Brits would have similar taste in names. That was before I married a Brit myself and it came to naming our daughter, when I saw just how different our perceptions of most names were. And though things have evened out to some degree with the rise of the Internet and the international sharing of opinions, looking at the top English girls’ names today (we’ll take up the boys’ next week), we can see that there is still quite a divide.