Top baby names in England and Wales

Sep 18, 2012 at 6:15 p.m. ET
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Well they say nothing is new under the sun and once again new parents in England and Wales have taken inspiration from bygone days to name their child. Here's the list of the top baby names
for 2011.

Looking at the 2011 choices for baby names you may be forgiven for thinking Queen Victoria is still on the throne. Talking of Her Majesty there are a fair few royal names represented on the boys' list, including Harry in the top spot, though Catherine — or even Elizabeth — have not yet made a comeback for girls.

Here's the list of the most popular baby names in England and Wales in 2011 as collated by The Office for National Statistics from birth registrations.

There have been some changes. From 2008 to 2010 the top girls' name was Olivia and, in 2010, this trend was also reflected by the boys where Oliver was the nation's favourite name. However by 2011 Olivia had been knocked down to second place in the girls' list and replaced in the top spot by Amelia. Harry reigned supreme in the boys' list.

Interestingly, though Harry and Charlie both feature in the top five, possibly following the royal theme, William is relatively low down at number 10. None of the female royals feature at all (no, not even Pippa!)

The current trend amongst new parents is for classic names which began to gain in popularity in the early 1990s. That was when names like Henry and Grace made a comeback in U.K. nurseries and it seems they just continue to go from strength to strength. Also extremely popular are diminutives or nicknames used as given names, most notably the number 4 spot on the boys' side — Alfie (instead of Alfred) and Lily (instead of Lillian) in the girls' number 3 placing.

Top 10 boys' names in England and Wales in 2011


2. Oliver

3. Jack

4. Alfie

5. Charlie

6. Thomas

7. Jacob

8. James

9. Joshua

10. William

Top 10 girls' names in England and Wales in 2011

1. Amelia

2. Olivia

3. Lily

4. Jessica

5. Emily

6. Sophie

7. Ruby

8. Grace

9. Ava

10. Isabella

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