More than 80 per cent of civil partnerships formed in York in 2021 were between opposite-sex couples, figures reveal.

In December 2019, the law around civil partnerships changed in England and Wales, allowing opposite-sex couples to form partnerships.

Office for National Statistics figures show that 31 opposite-sex couples formed civil partnerships in York in 2021, compared to seven couples who were the same sex.

Since December 2019, there have been 90 opposite-sex civil partnerships formed in York, with 57 formed in 2020 and two on New Years' Eve 2019 - one pair being Adrian Clayton, then 51, and Lara McClure, then 46, at York Register Office.

York Press: Lara McClure and Adrian Clayton were the first York opposite sex couple to form a civil partnership in December 2019Lara McClure and Adrian Clayton were the first York opposite sex couple to form a civil partnership in December 2019 (Image: Newsquest)

The couple, who have been together since 1993, previously told The Press that they wanted a, "legal arrangement that recognised their relationship and for their children's benefit", and while they, "are not anti-marriage", they felt "a marriage wasn't for them".

Previously, only same-sex couples could form a civil partnership, but in June 2018, the Supreme Court ruled that this was incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights.

Since the change in the law, around 13,400 opposite sex couples across England and Wales have formed civil partnerships, with 5,700 couples doing so in 2021.

Rich Pereira, deputy director of demography at the ONS, said: "In 2021, the majority of civil partnerships continued to be between opposite-sex couples, following their introduction in late 2019.

"Current data shows the age distribution of people forming opposite-sex civil partnerships is older than those forming same-sex civil partnerships.

"Those forming opposite-sex civil partnerships are more likely to have been previously married or civil partnered than those forming same-sex civil partnerships."

The popularity of same sex civil partnerships has plummeted since same sex marriage was legalised in England and Wales in 2014.

Same sex civil partnerships were first legalised in 2006, which saw 14,900 couples form the union.

This has fallen to just 1,039 partnerships being formed in 2021, and 785 in 2020, the lowest number on record.