JACK and Sophie remain the most popular names for boys and girls in Scotland, but they are being challenged for the top spot by Riley and Orla.
• Riley the only new entrant to boys’ top ten
• Sophie is most popular girls’ name for the eighth year in a row
• Lily fell from second to seventh in the girls list
The latest analysis of popular baby names by the National Records of Scotland revealed Jack and Lewis take the top two slots on the list for boys for the fifth year running.
Sophie, meanwhile, remains the most common name for girls in Scotland for the eighth year.
Riley has rocketed 11 places up the charts this year to become the third most common choice for boys. Other newly popular options include Tyler and Mason, while Poppy and Amelia are also rising up the baby girl list of names.
Ryan, Cameron, Matthew, Aiden and Jayden, meanwhile, have all seen their popularity slump. Riley is symptomatic of an American trend for using surnames as first names and has risen up the popularity charts in the States over the last 20 years.
Audrey Robertson, Acting Registrar General for Scotland, said: “We’ve seen a couple of hotshots coming straight into the top ten. Riley has come in straight at number three, that’s up 11 places. And we’ve seen Amelia, which is the top name in England, move 20 places up to number nine.”
Juliet Wilson, a humanist celebrant based in Edinburgh, said: “We named our daughter Anoushka because we wanted her to be the only one, but lots of people choose a name because they will fit in.”
Justine Roberts, co-founder of Mumsnet, said there were lots of discussions on the website about whether to choose an unusual name or to stick with the tried-and-tested options.
“If the Mumsnet forums are anything to go by, many many hours of fun can be had contemplating some weird and wonderful choices but in the end, as the latest statistics show, most of us choose to protect our offspring from our wildest fantasy names and opt for safer bets like Jack instead.
“But do remember you have middle names as your secret weapon. Middle names are often the graveyard where ugly family names go to die, or at least to be preserved until a future generation finds them alluring again.
“And if you have some entertaining or frivolous names you want to use somewhere, bung them in as well.”
Short names are very much in vogue for girls, with Ava, Mia, Isla and Lily all in the top ten. Orla rose from 58th placed to 19th and Poppy rose 11 places to 34th.
Culture secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “This gives us an interesting picture of the names chosen by proud new parents in Scotland and shows that our nation continues to have firm
favourites in Jack and Sophie.”
Ms Hyslop visited Heriot Hill nursery in Edinburgh, where she met 11-month old twins Sophie and Lucie Murray and their mother Sarah. She added: “Little Sophie is one of 582 babies to have been given Scotland’s
favourite girl’s name in 2012.
“Lucie ranks 87th in the top 100 names list, though interestingly had her name been spelt ‘Lucy’, she would have joined her sister in this year’s top five.”
National Records of Scotland registered the births of around 27,700 boys and 26,400 girls in the first 11 months of 2012.
Top ten boys’ names
Top ten girls’ names