Scotland's death rate reaches 30-year low

SCOTLAND'S death rate has dropped to the lowest recorded level for more than 30 years.

Statistics released by the Registrar General for Scotland revealed that there were 14,689 deaths during the first three months of this year – 141 fewer than in the corresponding period in 2009.

It is the lowest level of deaths for the first quarter in at least 30 years.

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More women died than men, the difference being around 650. Glasgow, with just over 1,700, was the local authority which recorded most deaths. Orkney was lowest with 48.

Heart disease and cancer were the biggest killers.

Figures also showed there were 62 civil partnerships registered in the first quarter – nine more than in the same period last year, with gay women more inclined to take the plunge than men.

The number of couples getting married fell by 62 when compared to last year, with 3,132 couples tying the knot.

There was a 1 per cent increase in the birth rate, with the number of boys born exceeding the number of girls by around 200.

More babies were born to unmarried parents – an increase of 75 to 7,516 when compared to the corresponding period last year.

Duncan Macniven, Registrar General for Scotland, said: "Today's figures show a record low number of deaths, though death rates fluctuate through the year and quarterly data can't be taken as indicative of the year ahead."