Britian's census results

Those churchgoers amongst you, who are tempted to think of us Brits as a godless bunch, may have been proved right. The results of Britain's 2011 census are now out, and there are two striking facts.

The first is that the number of non believers here has doubled since the last census in 2001. Ten years later, four million fewer of us call ourselves Christians, which will certainly cause sadness amongst the Christian majority. And what's more increasing numbers of our population don't believe in any organised religion at all.

But to be honest and putting conscience to one side, it's the second point that will hit home here and will provide the anti immigration lobby with plenty of fuel. Because the figures also reveal that there are three million more of us living in the UK who were born in a foreign country -- more than ever before. It is partly true that this is the legacy of our old Empire days, hence the rise in the number of people from the Indian sub continent. But one of the biggest groups moving and settling here are those from Poland.

Whatever, Britain is changing fast. We are apparently increasingly multi ethnic and that racial mix is racing ahead of expectation. But don't imagine that everything has changed overnight. Ten years ago, 87 percent of the UK's population was white British. Now it's 80 percent. So you could say that the character of the country is changing, but it's not as if Attilla the Hun has suddenly come cruising up the River Thames.

Even so, it's good to welcome back some basic truths. Once again, we learn from this census that there are more women than men in this country. A million more. That's because women live longer, I guess. But it may also be because British men are useless at filling in forms and the census may have missed a few.

This is Simon Bates for CBS News in London.

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