Number of people in Kilkenny with 'no religion' rises 84%

Number of Catholics in Kilkenny declined 1%

Sam Matthews


Sam Matthews



New data published today from Census 2016

The number of people in Kilkenny who identified as having no religion rose increased by 84% between Census 2011 and 2016, data published today shows.

Around 7.2% of the county's population (7,119 people) put 'no religion' in the most recent Census. Meanwhile, the number of people who identified as 'Catholic' in Kilkenny declined by 1% - less than the overall State decline of 3.4%.

Catholicism remains the predominant religion in this county, accounting for 84.3% (83,641) of Kilkenny’s population in April 2016. This was down slightly from 84,448 persons five years previously. The average age of Catholics in the county was 38.4 years, compared with the county’s overall average age of 37.9 years.

As with the State overall, the next largest group was those with no religion. In 2011, the 3,863 people with no religion comprised 4.0% of the county’s population. By 2016, this had increased to 7,119 people comprising 7.2% of the county’s population.

The 2,665 Church of Ireland members in the county made up 2.7% of its total population. Orthodox (858) and Muslims (776) completed the top five.

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) today published Census 2016 Profile 8 Irish Travellers, Ethnicity and Religion. The report details how both the proportion and total number of Catholics have fallen since 2011, with Catholics comprising 78.3% of the population in April 2016, down from 84.2% in 2011, while the number of people with no religion (including atheists and agnostics) increased by 73.6% to stand at 481,388 in 2016.