Birth Statistics

The number of births rises steadily in the Victorian period, from 1255 in 1838, to a peak of 2167 in 1878. The trend then reverses and there is a steady downward tendency to 1918 with 1292 births. As might be expected, there is an upsurge in births following World War I, but the underlying trend is still downwards, as there are fewer men (the lost generation) and families start to apply family planning methods. The low point is reached in 1933 with just 977 births in that year, but then the numbers start rising with another peak following World War II. The post war years show a fairly consistent pattern, with somewhere between 1000 and 1500 births per year.