If you’re anything like this week’s guest Loose Women panellists, Philip Schofield and Jane Moore, choosing a baby name can be a tricky feat. Despite having various inspirations on hand – musicians, favourite authors, historical relevance, family names – neither of our presenters could choose their child’s name until six weeks after the birth, and a stern warning letter!
This got the panel talking about the results of a new survey that revealed the UK’s most popular baby names, and for the first time in the UK, an Arabic name has topped the boys’ charts. After the survey combined a range of spellings*, Mohammed was deemed the most popular name for boys in the UK, closely followed by Oliver and Jack, whilst Sophia, top of the girls chart, and Sophie both sat within the top ten this year.
“It’s quite a big responsibility” Jane discussed. “I’d love to say [my daughter] was named after Eleanor of Aquitaine, but she was named after Miss Ellie from Dallas.”
Philip also had to make a swift U-turn after picking the romantic name of “Tess” prior to the birth of his daughter, when realising she would be known as “Tescofield.”
Guest panellist Penny Lancaster and husband Rod Stewart veered away from the somewhat “out there” names of celebrity counterparts, picking traditional Celtic names for their children Alistair and Aiden. And although the general public still seem heavily influenced by popular TV programmes this year, the survey showed that more traditional name choices were on the up.
A diverse generation
Representing the diverse culture of the UK in 2014, names such as Omar and Ali were new entries for boys’ baby names. Nur and Maryam were also popular for the girls, in the survey of online users conducted by Babycentre.co.uk.
By royal appointment
After a big surge of babies named George after the birth of the Prince in 2013, figures showed the classic boys name had dropped this year. Harry, remaining in the top ten, had also decreased in popularity versus previous years.
Although there has certainly been a cultural move in naming this year, the results of the 2004 baby name list show that several of the former most popular names are still firm favourites today, including Olivia, Emily and Chloe for the girls, and for the boys? It’s all the J’s – Joshua, Jack and James.
As for this year, here is the full top ten in full:
Top ten boys’ names
Top ten girls’ names
Does the baby names list influence your choice when it comes to selecting the right name? Do you think a child’s name can affect their experience growing up? We’d love to hear your thoughts!
*Including Muhammad, Mohammed and Mohammad