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Live births outside marriage


Source: Office for National Statistics – Births in England and Wales


  • A birth within marriage/civil partnership is that of a child born to parents who were lawfully married/in a civil partnership either, a) at the date of the child’s birth, or b) when the child was conceived, even if they later divorced/were granted a civil partnership dissolution or the father/second parent died before the child’s birth.


Key dates 
1939 - 1945Second World War
Introduction of the contraceptive pill
Family Planning Act
Made contraception readily available through the NHS
Abortion Act
Legalised abortion under 28 weeks free on the NHS.



This page is part of Our Changing Society, a free resource developed by CLOSER to provide detailed information about the historical and political backdrop to study participants’ lives.

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