The population of Wales on census day (27 March 2011) was 3.06 million – an increase of 153,000 (5 per cent) in the past 10 years, from 2.91 million in 2001. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) published the first results from the 2011 Census today.
The growth in Wales was the largest in any 10 year period between censuses since 1921. Around 90 per cent of the growth was due to migration, including people moving to Wales from elsewhere in the UK as well as international migration.
Jil Matheson, National Statistician, said:
"I'd like to thank everyone in Wales for their support. The 2011 Census has been a resounding success and I am proud of the incredible effort that has been put in. It is a rich source of information about the population and its characteristics. Across England and Wales around 19 out of 20 people responded and we have excellent statistical methods for ensuring we have a complete estimate of the whole population. These statistics will provide valuable information for planners, policy-makers and the public for years to come."
Of the local authorities in Wales, Cardiff had both the highest population, at 346,000 people, and the largest growth in population with an increase of 36,000 (12 per cent) from 2001. It was also the most densely populated, with 2,500 people per square kilometre, the equivalent of around 25 people on a rugby pitch.
Most authorities in Wales saw an increase in population since 2001, although there was a small decrease (0.3 per cent) in Blaenau Gwent. Across all of England and Wales 17 local authorities saw a decline in population.
The Welsh unitary authority with the largest proportion of people aged 65 and over was Conwy with 25 per cent, and the smallest proportion was in Cardiff (13 per cent). Wales also has a higher proportion of 65-year-olds than nearly all the regions of England.
Across England and Wales there was a significant increase in the number of under-five-year-olds. In Wales there were 11,000 more under-five-year-olds in 2011 than in 2001, an increase of 7 per cent. Wrexham had the largest proportion in this age group with 7 per cent, while the smallest proportion was in Ceredigion with 5 per cent. By comparison, the number of under fives in England increased by 13 per cent, approximately twice as quickly as in Wales.
The smallest average household size was in Conwy with 2.2 people. In general there was little variation in average household size across Wales.
Compared with England, population growth between 2001- 2011 was slower in Wales. In the same period the population of England rose by 3.6 million (7 per cent).
Glen Watson, Census Director said:
"The whole operation has worked well. We met our targets both for response and quality. We’ve had fantastic support from the public, and also from voluntary groups, community groups and local authorities throughout England and Wales. I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone involved, including the 35,000 people who worked on the data collection and helped to make the census a success."
Read the full reports:
|Local Authority||2011 population||2001 population||Change 2001-2011 (per cent)|
|Rhondda Cynon Taf||234,400||231,900||1.1|
|Neath Port Talbot||139,800||134,400||4|
|The Vale of Glamorgan||126,300||119,300||5.9|
|Isle of Anglesey||69,700||67,800||2.8|
Table source: Office for National Statistics
For further information:
Media Line: 01329 447654
Visit: www.ons.gov.uk/census for more detailed analysis and information
Some facts about the collection of census data across England and Wales:
• the 26 million 32-page (16 sheets of paper) questionnaires sent to households in England and Wales were printed at the rate of eight questionnaires per second
• stacked up, they would be 200 times the height of The Shard
• questionnaires were processed at a rate of 170,000 per day
• questionnaires were printed on paper from sustainable sources and 1,700 tonnes were destroyed and recycled after processing
Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available by visiting www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/assessment/code-of-practice/index.html or from the Media Relations Office email: firstname.lastname@example.org