Ten enter mixed-sex civil partnerships
Ten people in Sunderland have formed mixed-sex civil partnerships since they first became eligible to do so, new figures show.
Eligible opposite-sex couples have been able to form a civil partnership since December 2019 and Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show five couples in the area formed civil partnerships in 2020.
They were among over 7,700 couples nationally to have done so by the end of 2020.
Previously, only same-sex couples could enter into civil partnerships.
A spokeswoman from the Equal Civil Partnerships campaign group said the coronavirus pandemic meant 2020 was not the ideal first year for mixed-sex civil partnerships that was hoped for.
She added: "We are encouraged that over 15,000 people in England and Wales were able to form the legal and life relationship of their choice, ensuring security for themselves during a health crisis."
The figures also show the popularity of same-sex civil partnerships nationally has plummeted since the first legalised gay marriages took place in 2014.
In 2020, just 785 took place.
There were no same-sex civil partnerships in Sunderland in 2020 – and also none in 2019.
An ONS spokesman said: "There were almost ten times as many partnerships between opposite-sex couples than same-sex couples in 2020.
“Same-sex civil partnerships in England reached a record low in 2020 and may have been driven by the pandemic restrictions, where registrations services were temporarily suspended.”
There were also 671 same-sex civil partnership dissolutions granted nationally in 2020 – with 54% of these to female couples.