When looking at the information in this chapter, it is important to bear in mind that the City’s demographic profile is heavily influenced by its being largely the inner urban part of the wider Nottingham Core City Area.
The 2015 Mid-Year Estimate (MYE) gives a population of 318,900, an increase of 4,600 on the 2014 MYE and a total increase of 15,000 since the 2011 MYE.
Between 2014 and 2015, the City gained people through natural change (the excess of births over deaths), gained people due to international migration, and lost people through internal migration (within the country).
The City Council is responsible for providing services to its residents. Public health (based within the City Council from April 2013) and the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) are responsible for ensuring provision of services to all of those who are registered with a City GP regardless of where they live (370,854 people at May 2017), but also have a responsibility for the health of City residents at a population level. This chapter has the ONS resident population as its basis, but the limitations of this data should be borne in mind.
The main reasons for the increase in population over the last decade are international migration, and the natural increase in the population. The latter reason is due to both an increase in births (see below) and a reduction in the number of deaths. These are probably more due to changes in the age-structure rather than an increase in family size or improvements in mortality rates. Although over 25,000 people move into Nottingham each year from the rest of the country (the majority of whom will be students), a similar, slightly greater number moves out so net internal migration does not actually contribute to population growth.
Figure 1: Components of change, 2005-2015
Analysis of the revised Mid-Year Estimates suggests that the increase in population between 2014 and 2015 was 1,000 higher than the average for the previous 10 years, mainly due to higher international migration.
The wards which have had the greatest population increase between 2014 and 2015 are Arboretum, which will be in part due to new student properties near to Nottingham Trent University, and St Ann’s. In four wards (Bulwell, Radford and Park, and Wollaton East and Lenton Abbey), the population has declined slightly since 2014.
The ONS Mid-Year Estimates only include people staying in the country for longer than twelve months as “migrants”. Clearly, those staying for shorter lengths of time may also make calls upon health and other services and may register with a GP. ONS publish estimates of people staying for between three and twelve months for the purposes of employment or study, at local authority level, which give an indication of the scale of short term migration. In the year to mid-2015, there were an estimated 3,220 short term international migrants in Nottingham, higher than 1,890 the previous year. Of these, the majority (2,540) were estimated to be students, which means that Nottingham has the fourth highest number of short term migrant students in the country outside of London (behind Sheffield, Brighton and Hove and Manchester).
Note that these figures use the specific UN definition of ‘short term migrant’ and that the estimates do not include ‘visitors’ who stay for less than a month. Note also that these figures are derived from the International Passenger Survey and as such confidence limits apply – which will be quite large at the local authority level.
As part of the Census 2011 release of data, ONS have also published estimates of non-UK born short term residents – those staying less than 12 months. In Nottingham there were estimated to be 3,900 non-UK short term residents - the 4th highest level outside of London, behind Birmingham, Manchester and Oxford. Of these, 3,100 were students. These people are not included as part of the main outputs of Census data which use ‘usual resident population’ as their base. 
See here for Citywide, Ward and Lower Super Output Areas population estimates by age and sex
The latest (2015) MYEs show that the City has a very high proportion (29%) of people aged 18 to 29. This is due largely, but not entirely, to the presence of the two universities; full-time university students account for approximately 1 in 8 of the population. The percentages in other age-groups are lower than the average for England, with the proportions of those between 65 and 79 being particularly low.
The proportion of children is lower than the England average, although not for under- 4s. This may indicate that birth-rates are comparatively high, but also that a considerable number of children leave the City before starting school (see below).
Of the 81,900 people aged 50+ living in the City, 44,700 (55%) are under 65, 19,400 (24%) aged from 65 to 74, and 17,800 (22%) aged 75 and over.
This “unbalanced” age-structure has become more noticeable in recent years, with growth of the universities and international migrants generally being young adults. Also, 38% of new housing since 2002 is in the city centre, and nearly three quarters of all new housing across the City (excluding purpose built student properties) are dwellings with 1 or 2 bedrooms. This type of housing tends to appeal to younger, smaller households.
In age-structure terms, the City can broadly be categorised into three area types:
Those with a concentration of younger adults, including students – primarily the city centre, Lenton, Dunkirk, Radford, The Arboretum and Hyson Green.
Those with a concentration of older people, many of whom have lived in their houses since they were built – primarily Bilborough, Beechdale, Clifton and parts of Wollaton.
Other, more mixed areas, although Aspley ward, in particular has notably more children.
Taking older people (aged 50+) as a whole, the highest percentages (of a ward’s total population) are in Bulwell Forest (40%), Wollaton West (39.1%) and Clifton South (37.5%), but the pattern for the age-groups is sometimes very different.
Bulwell Forest, Clifton South and Wollaton West have the highest proportions in their 50s (13.7%, 13.2% and 13.0% respectively). Bulwell Forest (12.6%) and Wollaton West (11.2%) have the highest percentages in their 60s, and Bulwell Forest has the highest proportion in their 70s (8.9%), followed by Wollaton West (8.2%). Clifton South (7.8%) is the highest for those aged 80 and over.
See here for Citywide population estimates by age and sex
The gender balance generally follows national patterns. More boys are born than girls (about 106 boys for every 100 girls), but as men tend to die younger, for age-groups aged over 70 there are more women than men; there are twice as many women aged 85 and over as men. However, the percentage of men aged 25 to 39 is unusually high in Nottingham (e.g. 116 men to every 100 women in the 35 to 39 age-group). This is particularly the case in some City Centre and inner city areas, including those with high proportions of students or significant numbers of Houses in Multiple Occupation – which may be favoured by single, and often male, migrant workers.
See here for figures on the numbers of births
The number of births to mothers living in the City has risen in recent years, but from a low base. There were slightly more live births in 2015 (4,308) than in 2014 (4,242), and the number was much higher than at the low-point of 2000, where there were 3,275 live births. The number in 2010 (4,477) was the highest since before 1977 (the earliest date for which information is available). The only period in the last 35 years when it was close to this was between 1989 and 1991.
Changes to the number of births are affected much more by the number of women of child-bearing age than any changes in family-size. There is no information locally to suggest that the average completed family-size (i.e. the total number of children born to a woman during her lifetime) is increasing.
The Office for National Statistics no longer produce ward level births data, so the most recent figures are from 2014. These show that Aspley and Berridge were the wards with the greatest number of births (357 and 365 respectively in 2014). Both wards have high numbers of females aged 15-44. The wards which had the lowest numbers of births were those with higher numbers of students – with Dunkirk & Lenton and Wollaton East & Lenton Abbey having the lowest with 43 and 59 respectively in 2014
In 2015, 37.1% of births were to mothers born outside of the UK, a slight increase on 2014 (36%), and more than double the percentage in 2001 (14.5%)
See here for Census profiles including ethnic group populations by Ward (2011 Census)
Note: The only data available on ethnic groups is from the 2011 Census, as the Office for National Statistics no longer produce intercensal estimates of ethnicity.
The large majority of people who live in Nottingham are White British. In some of the outer estates, in 2011, 80% or more of the population were White British – in Clifton South the figure was 89%.
According to the 2011 Census, 34.6% of the City’s population are from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) groups, which are defined as everyone who is not White British. This is an increase from 19.0% in 2001.
The number of people in the White British and White Irish ethnic groups fell between 2001 and 2011 with the White British group now making up 65.4% of the City’s population compared to 81.1% in 2001. The number of people in every other ethnic group increased. The largest numerical increase was of nearly 21,000 in the Asian ethnic groups and the largest percentage increase was in the number of people from mixed ethnic groups which increased by nearly 12,000 people, 142.1%.
Looking at the detailed ethnic groups, those showing the biggest increases were Other White (2.5% to 5.1%), Mixed - White and Black Caribbean (2% to 4%), Black African (0.5% to 3.2%), and Pakistani (3.6% to 5.5%). The largest groups other than White British are now Other White (5.1%) – which will include large numbers of people from Poland - and Pakistani (5.5%).
The City’s age structure is generally influenced by the ‘White British’ group, with most other ethnic groups having a younger age profile than the City average. The two exceptions to this are the ‘White Irish’ and ‘Black Caribbean’ groups which have much higher proportions of older people. The youngest age profiles are amongst the mixed ethnic groups where 15-20% of people are aged under 5.
The population of pupils in the City’s educational provision also shows a varied picture, with 53.1% of pupils being members of BME groups (non White-British) in January 2017. This proportion has been rising in recent years from 37% in 2008
Over a quarter (26%) of all pupils have a first language that is not English. This has risen from 18% in 2008.
Analysis of the 2011 Census shows that the main BME groups have quite different geographical distributions
and in three Nottingham wards, Berridge, Leen Valley and St Ann’s, the proportion of the population who are from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) groups is more than 50%.
The Pakistani group was quite highly concentrated in Berridge, Dales and Leen Valley ward; whereas the Indian group was more widely spread, with the greatest numbers being in Radford & Park and Wollaton West. The Black and Black British group was also quite widely spread, but had concentrations in Aspley, St Ann’s and Radford & Park. The Mixed group, taken as a whole, was very widely spread around the City.
The ‘other’ White group, which includes people from the EU Accession countries, and notably Poland, are concentrated around Berridge, Radford & Park, Dales, St Ann’s and Bridge wards.
Evidence from a survey of migrants from the EU Accession countries
suggests that the main concentrations are in Sneinton/St Ann’s and Hyson Green/Radford.
Three distinct types of migration have a significant effect upon the City:
Migration both into and out of the City from elsewhere in the UK, which tends to be young adults, particularly students;
Migration from the City to the surrounding districts, including families with children or people likely to start families soon;
Migration into the City from outside the UK, often of young adults, particularly recently from Poland.
Taken together, these, and other categories of migration, mean that there is a considerable amount of “churn” in the City’s population.
In the year to mid-2015, Nottingham had a net loss of 900 people due to internal migration (i.e. 25,980 moved into the City and 26,870 moved out to other districts in England)
. The only age-group which the City gains, in net terms, from the rest of the country is 16 to 24. It loses all other age-groups.
The City lost 2,730 people in net terms to the other Greater Nottingham Districts (Ashfield, Broxtowe, Erewash, Gedling and Rushcliffe) in 2014-15
. Movements were however by no means all one way, with 6,012 people coming into the City from these Districts and 8,740 people leaving. Of particular interest is the net loss of 550 children aged under 16 from the City.
Based on previous MYEs, over the whole period since 2001, the net loss due to internal migration was -19,580, but the net gain due to international migration was 51,350 (including asylum seekers), equivalent to around 15% of the population 
The only source of information regarding the origins of these international migrants is National Insurance Registrations (NINos)
. This is by no means comprehensive, but it gives a useful guide. Between March 2004 and March 2016, nearly 61,200 people from overseas living in the City were granted NINos, 26,600 (43%) of them from the EU Accession states. Poland was easily the largest source of these people (17,700), but the next most important countries were the more traditional sources of India (4,630) and Pakistan (3,460).
The number arriving from the EU Accession countries in 2015/16 was 2,950, a decrease on the previous year which saw the highest annual figure (3,330). The majority of these were from Poland (1,400) but there was a notable number of migrant workers from Romania (970 - up by more than 830 on the previous year).
The number arriving from outside of the EU Accession countries increased to 3,450 in 2015/16 – from a recent low of 2,350 in 2012/13.
Population turnover (“churn”)
In total, according to the ONS, 33,400 people moved into the City in 2014-2015 and 30,500 moved out. This is similar to previous years, and so the City continues to have a high population turnover every year. Internal (within the UK) and International migration in and out of the City is, however, only one component of the “churn” in population within the City. Movements within the City are also important and are particularly marked in some areas.
The 2011 Census shows that, on Census day, 21% of people (over 64,000) in Nottingham had a different address to the previous year, compared with 12% in England as a whole
. Of these, just over half had moved within the City and the remainder moved to Nottingham from elsewhere in the UK or abroad. Many of these movers will be students.
The wards with the greatest turnover of population were those where students are concentrated (Wollaton East and Lenton Abbey 56.5%, Dunkirk & Lenton 55.1%, Arboretum 43.3% and Radford & Park 48.6%). Around 30% of the population of Bridge and St. Ann’s wards had moved in the last year although these wards also contain sizeable student populations. Bulwell Forest and Wollaton West have the most stable populations with 7.5% and 9% moving respectively.
“A Study of A2 and A8 Migrants in Nottingham”, University of Salford (for One Nottingham), April 2009
Office for National Statistics, Internal Migration by local authorities in England and Wales, Mid-2015
2011 Census, Origin and destination of migrants by age and sex
2011 Census Key Statistics. Table KS301
Office for National Statistics Ward vital statistics data (VS4 Tables).
Office for National Statistics 2015 Mid Year Estimates, June 2016.
Office for National Statistics 2015 Mid-Year Estimates, June 2016.
Office for National Statistics 2015 Mid Year Estimates, June 2016
Office for National Statistics Births data (VS Tables).
The 2001 – 2010 MYEs were revised in 2013 using information from the 2011 Census, so are not comparable with figures in previous JSNAs.
Office for National Statistics Mid-Year Estimates 2015, June 2016
Office for National Statistics Mid-Year Estimates 2015, June 2016.
Office for National Statistics Mid-Year Estimates & components of change data 2005-15.