This post is not directly relevant to St Paul’s ward or even to Clacton. It is just that I get irritated when I see something reported in a way that appears to pussy-foot around an issue the author is quite unnecessarily nervous of. I am greatful [again] to Cllr Peter Cawthron for pointing this one out. The ONS (Office for National Statistics) have just released the list of names given to newborn boys and girls in 2014, in England and Wales. The press release http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/baby-names–england-and-wales/2013/stb-baby-names-2013.html and subsequent reporting, such as in The Independent http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/most-popular-baby-names-2014-oliver-and-amelia-top-official-list-for-second-year-in-a-row-10458531.html has been that the two names are Amelia and Oliver.
That may be true in a narrow, literal sense, as Oliver does come in with 6,949 occurences. However, when you put together the spelling of Mohammed, with Muhammed and Mohammad as well, you get 7,445 occurences. Yes – You could add in the Oili’s and Olivier’s as well, but it doesn’t bridge the gap. ONS figures are here http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/baby-names–england-and-wales/2013/rtd-baby-names–boys–2013.xls
Mohammed has been the most popular name for baby boys for the last few years, and will be for years into the future. For those who feel uncomfortable with this . . . Get used to it! For those not so encumbered . . . Enjoy! We have always been a mongrel race.