Although it will be welcomed by those women who dislike the negative connotations of the term, the abolition of the word spinster will deepen the fears of bishops that the Government is set on undermining the institution of marriage as traditionally understood by the Church.I should say so.
The Church of England, which refers to "spinsters" and "bachelors" of the parish when banns of marriage are read in church, is to come under pressure from the Registrar General's Office, part of the Office of National Statistics, to follow suit.
But the Church is firmly wedded to its spinsters and bachelors and the change is likely to generate a new Church-State dispute. A Church spokesman said: "We are quite open to the way language is evolving, but we do not see any improvement being made here. This is something we will resist."
One might not want to be a spinster, but one would hate to see the word disappear.