The Office for National Statistics has released its second set of findings from the 2011 census for England and Wales, focusing on aspects such as living arrangements, religion, ethnicity, country of birth, languages spoken, health and economic activity of the 2011 population.
The first set of figures
, published in July 2012, showed that the population of England and Wales had increased from 52.4 million in 2001 to 56.1 million in 2011. The data in this second release shows that more than half (55%) of the rise in the population was due to migration. It also records an increase in ethnic diversity over the last ten years; there are now 400,000 fewer white British people than in 2001, and almost one in eight people were born abroad.
The data also showed a general decline in religious beliefs, with the number of people with no religion almost doubling from 7.7 million to 14 million. The number of Christians has declined from 72% to 59% of the population in the last ten years.
The census found that the number of people privately renting homes has almost doubled in the last ten years, from 1.9 million homes in 2001 to 3.6 million homes in 2011 rented from a private landlord or letting agency. Other key figures in the release looked at health, with four out of every five (81 per cent) describing themselves as being in good or very good health. It also shows that in 2011, more people had a degree (27%), than no qualifications at all (23%).
BBC home affairs correspondent Dominic Casciani said the census showed that the UK is ‘in the midst of an astonishing era of demographic change due to globalisation’. The BBC website
has published a summary of key census figures.
The 2011 census is being released in four waves. A third wave is scheduled for March 2013 with a fourth planned for July 2013 (further release date details available here
). Results for Northern Ireland were also published today by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
. More results for Scotland will be released on Monday (17 December).