National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Vital Events Reference Tables 2009

Vital Events Reference Tables 2009

First published 6 August 2010
Corrected 25 March 2011 and 6 July 2011

National Statistics Logo

Correction of error

We regret that, until 25 March 2011, over a fifth of the figures on the first page of Table 6.2 appeared on a wrong row - please refer to the note on the Section 6 - Deaths: causes page. We apologise for any problems or inconvenience caused by this error.

In addition, until 6 July 2011, six of the numbers in Table 3.10 were wrong - please refer to the note on the Section 3: Births page. We apologise for any problems or inconvenience caused by this error.

Vital events reference tables

These tables contain the numbers of Vital Events for 2009. They provide the same kinds of information as was contained in the pre-2001 Registrar General's Annual Reports (available on this website), plus additional details that have been added in recent years. The tables are grouped into eight sections: Summary; Adoptions and re-registrations; Births; Stillbirths and infant deaths; Deaths; Deaths by cause; Marriages; and Divorces, Civil Partnerships and Dissolutions of Civil Partnerships. In almost all cases, the tables give the numbers of vital events which were registered in Scotland in the calendar year. Some tables also provide figures for earlier years, and/or annual averages for 5-year periods. Most of the figures are for Scotland as a whole, but there are some tables which provide statistics for each Local Authority and each NHS Board area. 


Detailed commentary on the Vital Events statistics for calendar years as a whole (including some comparisons of the figures for different years, for parts of Scotland and for some other countries) can be found on this website:


This is an annual publication. The National Records of Scotland (NRS) collects the underlying data on a daily basis, as and when each event is registered. These are the final statistics for the latest year, and as such are all new (although provisional versions of some of them appeared in the ‘Preliminary Annual Figures’ publication, which has now been superseded). The previously-published final figures for earlier years' adoptions and re-registrations, births, stillbirths, deaths, marriages and civil partnerships are very rarely revised; some minor changes may be made to the previously-published figures for divorces and dissolutions of civil partnerships, due to the late notification to NRS of these events.

Information about (e.g.) the sources, methods, definitions and reliability of these statistics is available from the NRS website's pages of general background information on Vital Events statistics, background information on points which are specific to statistics on births, background information on points which are specific to statistics on marriages and civil partnerships, background information on points which are specific to statistics about divorces and dissolutions, and background information on points which are specific to statistics about deaths.

These figures are directly comparable with those for other parts of the United Kingdom: there are no significant differences across the UK in how Vital Events data are collected and processed.

Statistics of deaths for the calendar year as a whole are used in some Scottish Government targets, such as reductions in the numbers of suicides and in the age-standardised death rates, of people under 75, from ischaemic (coronary) heart disease, cerebrovascular disease (stroke) and cancer: Scottish Government reports on progress towards these targets. The numbers of births and deaths are used to update estimates of life expectancy and the size of the population, for which there are also government targets. More generally, Vital Events statistical data are used for research into, and to develop and monitor policies on, a wide range of topics, including: fertility; stillbirths and infant deaths; alcohol- and drug- related deaths; suicides; deaths from healthcare associated infections; the effectiveness of cancer screening programmes; cancer survival rates; hospital standardised mortality rates; and the arrangements for certifying deaths. 

Click on the section below to see relevant statistics

Notes and Definitions (Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF)) (50 Kb)

PDF files require Acrobat Reader. Download Acrobat Reader free Get Acrobat Reader

This is an annual publication.
The dates of future publications will be announced on our Future Publications page.

Related Links

Statistical Service in Scotland

Enquiries and Suggestions

For our contact details please see the publication home page.

All statistical publications