Nearly a third of people in Cornwall have never been married or in a civil partnership last year, new figures show – as the rate of single people across England and Wales jumped in the past decade.

It comes as percentage of people in legally recognised partnerships has fallen across the two nations since the previous census took place in 2011.

The number of people not in a civil partnership or marriage when the census took place last year in Cornwall was 153,721 – 32% of those aged 16 and older.

Nationally, 37.9% of people 16 and older were single in 2021, up from 34.6% in 2011. There is no localised 2011 census data for Cornwall.

Data from the census shows 222,489 people were in opposite sex marriages and 1,282 were in same sex marriage last year in Cornwall. The figures also show 818 were in same sex civil partnerships and 394 were in opposite sex civil partnerships in 2021.

It means 47.1% of people in the area were married or in a civil partnership​.

There were 53,413 divorced people, while 140 had a dissolved civil partnership last year.

John Wroth-Smith, Census deputy director, said: "When looking a bit deeper, we can see that the proportion of people in a marriage or civil partnership has declined, which follows the long-term trend of declining marriages."

"Conversely, the number of people who were never married or in a civil partnership has increased by almost 3 million," Mr Wroth-Smith added.

Across England and Wales, 21.7 million people were married or in a civil partnership – making up 45% of those aged 16 and older. And 9.1% of the population are divorced or no longer in a civil partnership.