Thomas tanks into the baby name lead

This marks a big increase in popularity from last year, though it has featured prominently in the list for the past decade.

Thomas just edges into first place, ahead of that perennial favourite Jack.

Another popular choice of recent years, William, has fallen behind Joseph/Joe and Frederick/Freddy this year.

Toby, our joint second place last year, has disappeared from this year's list, though overall the trend from previous years for 'older' names and diminutives continues strongly.

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Sophie (and variations) comes out on top for girls in the EDP births column, rising from joint fourth in 2011.

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A feature of the girls' list in recent years has been alternative spellings and diminutives on favourite names.

This year, for example, we have Annie, Abbie, Evie and Hettie, Emily/Emilia, Annabel/Annabelle and Sophia/Sofie/Sophie.

One name that has been gaining in popularity in recent years is Olivia, which so far has been immune to the fashion for alternatives.

More unusual names spotted include Irie and Miya.

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