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How many gay people are there in the UK?

A 'one in ten' per cent rule (10%) has long-held in popular culture as a 'reliable guesstimate' of homosexuality rates. With a UK population of just over 64 million, this means there would be around 6,400,000 people who are gay, lesbian or bisexual.

However, depending on who's crunching the data, percentages (%) vary:

  • The Office for National Statistics claims that just 1.5% of people in Britain are gay, lesbian or bisexual
  • The Treasury estimates 6% when analysing the financial implications of the new Civil Partnerships Act
  • Stonewall say 5-7% is a reasonable estimate
  • Public Health England concludes an LGB adult population in England of 2.5%, rising to 3.6% (Greater Manchester), 5.1% (Greater London), and 9% (Brighton and Hove). 

Any data for transgender and intersex people is completely absent, though the Public Health England report said the report "specifically focused on the LGB population and further work is needed to include transgender and intersex people."

Size of the lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) population of England | Public Health England | Jan 2017
Why do we need an estimate of the LGB population? | LGBT Foundation
 Demographics of sexual orientation are difficult to establish for a variety of reasons... Wikipedia

 Gay Britain: what do the statistics say? The Guardian | 3 Oct 2013 
Gay in Britain: People's experiences and expectations of discrimination Stonewall | 2013
Living Together: British attitudes to lesbian, gay and bisexual people | Stonewall | 2012
Serves you right: Lesbian and gay people's expectations of discrimination | Stonewall | 2008
Love Thy Neighbour: What people of faith really think of homosexuality Stonewall | 2008

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