Immigration leads to increase in population

By Gary Smee Friday 14 December 2012 Updated: 14/12 12:29

PEOPLE born outside the British Isles accounted for almost two thirds of the increase in Wychavon’s population over the last ten years.

Almost 4,000 more people now live in the district compared to a decade ago and latest figures released from last year’s Census show it is largely being driven by immigration.

More than 6,517 Wychavon residents were born outside of the UK according to the 2011 survey compared to 3,966 ten years ago. Foreign nationals made up 64 per cent of the extra 3,987 people added to the district’s population since 2001, with the

total now at 116,944. Poland is the top non-UK place of birth followed by Ireland, Germany, South Africa and India.

The vast majority of the district’s population - almost 95 per cent - are British or Irish.

The data also puts a spotlight on the changing face of Wychavon and the way people live their lives. There was a ten per cent drop in the number of declaring their religion as Christian with the figure falling to 83,728. But there was a significant rise in the number of non-believers with more than 10,000 more people saying they had no faith compared to 2001, while 318 people stated they were Jedi Knights. There are 118 Pagans in the district, 95 Spiritualists and 14 Druids. Six people said their

religion was Heavy Metal while one person said they believed in Witchcraft.

The number of people getting married has increased to 53,765 in the last ten years, more than half of those aged 16 and over.

It is a bigger increase than those classed as single, while there are now 164 residents in civil partnerships - something which did not exist when the survey was carried out in 2001.

There are more than 2,400 single parent households, 11,871 people who live on their own while just under 5,500 residents say their health is either bad or very bad.

In a sign of how soaring motoring costs have impacted on household budgets since 2001, more than 6,350 households now have no access to a car, while 1,084 houses have no central heating.

The impact of the boom in the UK’s housing market has also been revealed with the number of homeowners with a mortgage in Wychavon falling by just under ten per cent and the number of houses rented rising by more than 1,500 in ten years.

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