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Regional Profiles - Population and Migration - West Midlands, October 2011

Released: 28 October 2011 Download PDF

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Local authorities with largest percentages of children and older people, mid-2010

West Midlands

West Midlands local authorities with largest percentages of children and older people, mid-2010
Source: Office for National Statistics

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The West Midlands has the second highest proportion of population aged under 16 and an above average proportion of older people.

In mid-2010, 19.3 per cent of residents were aged under 16. This was the second highest proportion for any English region and compares with18.7 per cent for England. The proportion aged 65 and over was also slightly above average at 17.2 per cent compared with 16.5 per cent for England. 

The local authority areas with the highest proportions of children were Birmingham (22.0 per cent) and Sandwell (21.2 per cent). For people aged 65 and over the highest proportions were in Malvern Hills (23.6 per cent) and Herefordshire unitary authority (22.2 per cent).

The West Midlands’ total population was 5.5 million in mid-2010. The region contains one of the largest conurbations in England, as well as some of the country’s most rural and sparsely populated counties.  Birmingham local authority district was home to 1.0 million people and had a population density of 3,900 people per sq km. In contrast, two of the five most sparsely populated counties in England are also found in the region – Herefordshire (82 people per sq km) and Shropshire (92 people per sq km).

Between 2001 and 2010 the population of the region increased by 175,000, or 3.3 per cent. This is below the corresponding rate of 5.6 per cent for England. The 2008-based projections indicate that the rate of population growth may remain below the national average. The total population is projected to reach 6.0 million by 2030, of which 22.4 per cent would be aged 65 and over, slightly above the figure for England (21.7 per cent).

Between mid-2008 and mid-2009 international migration resulted in a net increase of 10,000 people in the region which was almost balanced by a net increase of 9,000 people due to inter-regional migration. Natural change (births minus deaths) added 20,000 to the region’s population.

Source: Office for National Statistics

Background notes

  1. The geography used reflects the changes which took place in April 2009.

  2.  Population estimates and projections are for 30 June each year. The mid-2010 population estimates are those published on 30 June 2011 and the 2008-based subnational population projections are those published on 27 May 2010.

  3. Mid-year migration data were published on 25 November 2010.

  4. You may use or re-use this information (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence, or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU, or email:

  5. Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available by visiting or from the Media Relations Office email:

Content from the Office for National Statistics.
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