Latest Southend-on-Sea census data published

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has published the latest Census 2021 data for Southend-on-Sea.

Logo - Census 2021

It is the first time a census of England and Wales has asked people about their sexual orientation and gender identity, alongside data on housing, and qualification levels.

Housing data for Southend-on-Sea revealed the majority of houses are owned outright (31.6%), with a further 30.4% owned with a mortgage, loan or shared ownership. 11.5% are socially rented and 26.5% are privately rented or rent free.

Across England and Wales, 32.8% of households owned the accommodation they lived in outright and 29.7% owned their accommodation with a mortgage, loan or shared ownership, which is similar to Southend-on-Sea.

There is a difference when it comes to the proportion of households that rented their accommodation in the social rented sector or privately - in England and Wales, 17.1% were in the social rented sector and 20.3% privately rented their accommodation.

In 2021, there were 1,973 communal establishment residents (1.1% of the usual resident population) in Southend-on-Sea and almost all of these (1,391) were in care homes. The rest were in education establishments, hostels or hospital settings.

The Census 2021 results about people with second addresses include data about whether a second address is inside or outside the UK, and its purpose. Overall, 3.2 million usual residents in England and Wales (5.3% of the population) reported staying at a second address for more than 30 days a year.

  • in Southend-on-Sea, 6,526 residents (3.6% of the city’s population) reported staying at a second address for more than 30 days a year, with
  • 4,933 residents (2.7%) using a second address in the UK and 1,593 usual residents (0.9%) using a second address outside the UK

With this data it is important to consider the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, for instance, students may have been more likely to be residing at their parent or guardians’ address for the whole academic year with no use of a second term-time address.

The ONS has also published data about education in England and Wales:

In 2021, there were 11.5 million schoolchildren and full-time students (20.4%) across England and Wales, out of a total 56.4 million usual residents aged five years and over. In Southend-on-Sea, there were 31,766 schoolchildren and full-time students (18.6%), out of a total 170,444 usual residents aged five years and over. 

Census 2021 also provides data about residents' highest level of qualification. In Southend-on-Sea, 28,823 people (19.7%) have no formal qualifications and 39,832 people (27.2%) have Level 4 or above: Higher National Certificate, Higher National Diploma, Bachelor's degree, or post-graduate qualifications

The census question on sexual orientation was a voluntary question asked of those aged 16 years and over. Across England and Wales, 43.4 million people (89.4%) identified as straight or heterosexual, 748,000 people (1.5%) identified as gay or lesbian, 624,000 people (1.3%) described themselves as bisexual and 165,000 people (0.3%) identified as any other sexual orientation.

In Southend-on-Sea, 131,459 people (89.79%) identified as straight or heterosexual, 2,342 people (1.6%) identified as gay or lesbian and 1,917 people (1.31%) described themselves as bisexual. The remaining 468 people (0.32%) identified as any other sexual orientation.  

The census question on gender identity was a voluntary question asked of those aged 16 years and over. In England and Wales, 0.5% of the population reported that their gender identity was different from their sex at birth. In Southend-on-Sea, 0.53% of people aged 16 years and over have a gender identity different from their sex registered at birth.

Cllr Stephen George, leader of the council, said: “It is with great interest the census results confirm changes in our community that we’ve seen happen over the years. I also welcome the inclusion of data on sexual orientation and gender identity for the first time. This data is useful because it helps inform how we deliver our services in Southend-on-Sea, to make sure we meet the needs of our residents. Thank you to everyone who took part in the census, became part of history and helped tell the ongoing story of our wonderful City of Southend.”

You can find out more about the Census 2021 results on the ONS website. You can also create your own area profile for local areas in England and Wales using the ONS’ new interactive tool, "Build a custom area profile"

Published: 19th January 2023

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