Christian Names (part 2)

by @edent | # # | Read ~129 times.

This is a follow-up post to 2015’s “What’s Your Christian Name?“.


“Christian Name” used to be synonymous with “First Name” or “Given Name”. The majority of people in the UK are not Christian and, therefore, don’t have Christian Names. Yet there are lots of local Government forms which still insist on this archaic phrasing.

Here are a few of my “favourites”.

Local Government

First up, councils around the UK.

No sex please, we’re Scottish

Would you like to apply for a sex shop licence?
Moray council's sex shop form.
I’m unsure on what the Christian faith has to say about selling martial aides

In fairness, the council use the same wording in their form to For Dispensation From Prohibition On The Use Of Fireworks During Night Hours.

And the lion shall lay down with the lamb

Argyle and Bute
Application to keep dangerous wild animals.

I know it is mean to dunk on Comic Sans…

… But here’s Beverley’s allotment form
A form written in Comic Sans font.


I (sort of) work for the NHS (ish). So I hope this will be taken in the spirit it is intended – improving the way we communicate with patients and staff.

I’ve excluded any historic documents, or patient comments.

Calderdale and Huddersfield

Logging compliments in Datix
Please type IN CAPITALSthe surname first following by the Christian name.


Records Management Policy
Patient SurnamePatient Christian NameRMC number.


BLISS audit
All babies are referred to by their christian name.

Glebe Surgery

New patient registration form
Registration questionnaire asking for a christian name.

Mid Essex

Paediatrics Investigation Handbook
Four points of identification must be written on the bottle i.e.: Christian name, Surname, DOB, and Hosp No.


Doloplus assessment tool
Pain assessment questions asking for a Christian name.


Claim Form for Deceased Patients Property
Property form asking for a christian name.

Does this matter?

For people who are (for want of a better word) privileged, the notion of micro-aggressions seems almost hopelessly childish. A throwaway comment which upsets you that much? Man up!

But, for those of us outside the default, it can be a sudden jolt to the system. An otherwise pleasant day ruined by an unwelcome reminder that society still doesn’t see you as normal.

I know some people who think this is just Politeness Gone Mad – but it hurts. It tells you that some parts of the country simply won’t accept you for who you are. It’s sad, irritating, and – thankfully – getting better.

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