Radio Sandwell Local News

Mohammed is top West Midlands boy's name

2013-08-14 21:21:31

Mo Farah
Mo Farah and Prince Harry could be the inspiration behind the top two boy's names

Mohammed is the most popular boys name in the region, according to new government statistics.

The two spellings of the name both figure in the top ten adding up enough to beat Harry - made trendy by the roguish charm of the nation’s prince.

The Office for National Statistics said 638 boys born in the West Midlands were called Mohammed - perhaps partly inspired by the Olympic success of British runner Mo Farah - while a further 557 were called Muhammad.

Muhammad topped the London list, with 768 boys in the capital being given that name last year.

The Midland list, with 709 boys called Harry, also included 669 Olivers, 621 Charlies and 597 Jacks in the top five.

The names Riley, Jacob, Alfie and Noah completed the list.

Of course, if proud parents did want to name their son after the 4th in line to the throne they should have used his proper name Henry, of which Harry is the derivative.

The top three girls' names in the West Midlands, mirroring the national list, were Amelia - a runaway winner with a count of 746 - Olivia and Jessica.

Evie, Emily, Ava, Mia, Sophie, Lily and Ruby were also in the local top ten.

Dr Khurshid Ahmed, chief executive of Birmingham Muslim education group the Sultan Bahu Trust, welcomed the list as an indication of the increasing diversity of the Midlands.

"Mohammed or Muhammad - it's the same name but spelled in different ways - is a very common name for boys in the Muslim world.

Dr Ahmed, who advised Tony Blair on social cohesion and was awarded the CBE in 2008 for services to community relations added: "It's a way of people showing affection for the prophet, as well as showing unity amongst the community. I'm not a bit surprised at the survey.

"I suppose people also identify with those who are high achievers like Mo Farah." 

Website Netmums founder Siobhan Freegard added: "Baby names are a fascinating snapshot of the country's culture and, while we're still wild about Harry and Amelia, this year's two biggest baby name trends are Edwardian-style names and posh becoming common.

"Many mums are looking back into their family tree and selecting great-grandparents' names, while others are seeking names which would have seemed stuffy a decade ago but fit with the current retro vibe across the UK." 

Top 10 boys names in the West Midlands:

1: Harry (709 registered)

2: Oliver (669)

3: Mohammed (638)

4: Charlie (621)

5: Jack (597)

6: Riley (580)

7: Jacob (559)

8: Muhammad (557)

9: Alfie (521)

10: Noah (453)

Top 10 girls names:

1: Amelie (746)

2: Olivia (429)

3: Jessica (410)

4: Evie (361)

5: Emily (359)

6: Ava (348)

7: Mia (344)

8: Sophie (340)

9: Lily (337)

10: Ruby (310)

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