News1 min ago
How quickly is the population rising in the UK
A. The official projections which were released in the Social Trends report in January 2002 suggest that the UK population will rise from the current 60 million and peak at 66 million in 2040, and then gradually decline.
This increase does not apply to all areas: the population of Scotland is believed to be in decline, but this can't be confirmed until the latest census returns are published later this year.
Q. How much of that population rise is due to immigration
A. The figures show that immigration will probably account for three-quarters of the population increase over the next ten years. The number of people who has been accepted for settlement in the UK has risen from 28,000 to 124,000 between 1999 and 2000.
That's a sharp jump...
Yes. It's mostly made up of asylum seekers from Asia and Africa, according to the Office for National Statistics.
Q. Have we reached to point where people over 65 outnumber those under 16
A. That won't happen until 2014. It's due to a combination of baby boomers reaching late middle age, longer life expectancy and the decline in births as women put having children off to follow their education or careers.
Q. Did the Social Trends report find any other changes
A. Yes, it found that the structure of British Society is going through a major change. For example, almost two-fifths of all births are now outside marriage, and it has become the norm for people to live together before marriage.
There are twice as many lone parents now as there was in 1971, making up six per cent of all households. That's partly due to divorce, but increasingly because of births to women living on their own.
Q. Are more people living on their own now
A. Yes, more than ever. Last year, the UK had seven million one-person households - half of them under 65. There are now more people living alone than there are parents living with children.
That's a bit of a shock...
Yes, a study for Abbey National found that just 6.5 million people in the UK live in a traditional nuclear family of parents and children.
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By Sheena Miller