James is most popular baby boy’s name in Mid & East Antrim and Charlotte and Olivia tie as top baby girl’s name: Less common names across Northern Ireland included Zeplin, Blaise, Maverick, Ace, Jupiter, Lady, Divine, Rio, Star and Vogue

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It’s official – James and Charlotte and Olivia were the most popular first names given to baby boys and girls in Mid & East Antrim in 2017.

In Antrim & Newtownabbey the top names were Jacob and Emily and Grace while in the Causeway Coast & Glens the number one names were Jack and Emily.

Across Northern Ireland, James and Emily were the most popular first names.

These are some of the findings of the Baby Names 2017 statistics published today by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency.

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Emily has been the most popular girls’ name in each of the past five years, albeit jointly with Grace in 2013, whereas James has been the most popular boys’ names in each of the past three years.

In terms of boys’ names, Jack (which held the top spot for 12 consecutive years between 2003 and 2014) comes a close second to James in popularity with Noah in third place.

Hunter climbed the greatest number of places to join the top 100 names for boys, rising from rank 207 in 2016 to rank 98 in 2017. Logan joined the boy’s top 10 for the first time in 2017.

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While the popularity of boys’ names has varied over the years, James, Jack, Daniel and Thomas have all stood the test of time featuring in both the 2017 top 10 and the top 10 a decade previously.

Zeplin, Blaise, Maverick, Ace and Jupiter on the other hand, were some of the less common names given to baby boys in 2017.

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In terms of girls’ names, Grace has once again taken second place in the top 10, whilst Olivia comes a close third.

Roise climbed the greatest number of places to join the top 100 names for girls, moving from rank 151 in 2016 to rank 90 in 2017. Isla and Charlotte both joined the girl’s top 10 for the first time in 2017.

Compared with boys, a greater number of girls’ names have held the top spot since the reporting of first names began in 1997.

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Some of the less common names given to baby girls in 2017 were Lady, Divine, Rio, Star and Vogue.

Almost 1,000 new baby names were registered in 2017 that had not been registered since the reporting of baby names began in 1997.

Blockbuster movies, popular television series, current celebrities and memorable places continue to appear to be influencing factors for some parents.

Of those registrations containing details of the father, almost 500 boys were given their fathers’ name as a first or additional name. However fewer than 100 girls were given their mothers’ name.

More generally, the statistics published today highlight that the popularity of baby names in 2017 (both boys and girls) varied, for example, by District Council, age of mother, country of birth of mother and month of registration.

A total of 23,248 births were registered in Northern Ireland during 2017. There were slightly more births of males (11,984) than females (11,264) registered, accounting for 51.5 per cent and 48.5 per cent of all registrations respectively.

As with previous years, a greater variety of girls’ names (2,271) than boys’ names (1,736) were registered in 2017. The range of names being used by parents has grown considerably over the past 40 years, with 1,179 girls’ names and 643 boys’ names being registered in 1977.

Almost 1,000 new names were registered in 2017 that had not been registered since the reporting of baby names began in 1997. Some 61 per cent of the new names were for girls and 39 per cent were for boys.

Top 10 boys’ names:

• James was the most popular first name
given to boys during 2017, with 243 boys
having been given this name. This is the
third successive year that James has held
the top spot.
• Jack remained the second most popular
name for boys. It has been ranked in either
first or second place each year since the year
2000. It has been number one 13 times.
• James and Jack have consistently been in
the top 10 since reporting on baby names in
Northern Ireland began in 1997.
• Noah climbed from fifth place in 2016 to
third place in 2017 and has been in the top
10 since 2012. It was virtually unused in
the late 1990s.
• Logan entered the top 10 in 2017 for the
first time. It came close to the top 10 in
2014 (rank 15) and has been in the top 30
since then.

Top 10 girls’ names:

• Emily remained the most popular name for
girls for the fifth consecutive year, with 216
girls having been given this name in 2017.
• Grace remained the second most popular
name for girls and has been in the top three
ranking each year since 2006.
• Olivia, the third most popular girls’ name in
2017 has been in the top 10 since 2014.
• In 2017, Isla and Charlotte both entered
the top 10 for the first time since the
reporting of baby names began in 1997.
• Isla has grown steadily in popularity over the
past 10 years whereas Charlotte has gained
popularity rapidly since 2015, when it was
ranked number 34.
• Names are diversifying. In 2017, only 14
per cent of babies were given one of the
top 10 names, compared to 23 per cent in
1997.

Month of birth:

• There was a spike in the number of girls
named Maya who were born in May and
three girls born in April were given the name
April.
• The popularity of the name Autumn
increased for girls born in October.
• There was a spike in the number of boys
born in December who were given the name
Joseph.
• There was a spike in the number of girls
called Holly or Hollie born in December.
• For girls born in July there was a spike in the
number of girls named Ruby; Ruby being
the birthstone for July.
Place names:
• Adelaide, Havana, Houston, Paris, Rio and
Rome were some of the place names given
to children whose births were registered in 2017.

Botanical names:
• There were several baby girls given the
names of flowers as first names. Of these,
the most popular were Lily, Poppy, Rose,
Daisy, Jasmine, Violet and Iris.
Less common names:
• Independence was one of the less common
names in 2017 and also the longest first
name given (not including those containing
a hyphen).
• Some of the less common names given to
baby boys in 2017 included: Zeplin, Blaise,
Maverick, Ace and Jupiter.
• Some of the less common names given to
baby girls in 2017 included: Lady, Divine,
Rio, Star and Vogue.
Parents’ names:
• Of those registrations containing details
of the father, almost 500 boys were given
their fathers’ name as a first or additional
name. Fewer than 100 girls were given their
mothers’ name.

Top 10 baby names in Northern Ireland, 2017

Boys:

James – 243 Babies
Jack – 226 Babies
Noah – 189 Babies
Charlie – 185 Babies
Jacob – 180 Babies
Harry – 169 Babies
Thomas – 158 Babies
Daniel – 147 Babies
Oliver – 143 Babies
Logan – 125 Babies

Girls:

Emily – 216 Babies
Grace – 202 Babies
Olivia – 179 Babies
Isla – 153 Babies
Anna – 142 Babies
Sophie – 132 Babies
Ella – 128 Babies
Amelia – 127 Babies
Charlotte – 124 Babies
Sophia – 121 Babies

An interactive tool which will return the rank that any particular name has held over the period 1997 to 2017 is available at the following link https://www.nisra.gov.uk/sites/nisra.gov.uk/files/publications/Baby_Search_tool_2017.xlsx.

Any feedback that you may have regarding the statistics, can be provided using the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BabyNamesNI

 

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