Population growth a ‘challenge to be met’
Latest figures reveal expansion of 1.1% in 2014
THE POPULATION of Buckinghamshire rose by 16 people every day last year.
Figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that the county had a population of 521,922 in 2014, up 1.1 per cent from the previous year, meaning an increase of 5,183 people in 12 months. The causes of the increase were split between people moving in from other areas of the UK as well as from abroad, and natural growth, with the number of births outnumbering the amount of deaths.
The figures show that 2,087 more people moved to the county from other parts of the country than went in the opposite direction, while there were 1,629 more people moving to Bucks from abroad than there were people moving from the area to other countries. There were also 1,913 more births than deaths.
It has led to concern that if the pattern continues in years to come, the county will struggle to cope with the population expansion.
Chris Brown, chairman of Gerrards Cross Parish Council said: “Bucks is a very popular place to live and it’s good that people want to come and live here. The problem is that the area can only take so many people. The schools are filling up all the time and there is a limited amount of housing.”
Both Chiltern and South Bucks saw a 0.8 per cent increase in their population, with Aylesbury Vale seeing the largest growth with 1.9 per cent. The figures show that the national population also increased by 0.8 per cent, with it now standing at just over 65.5 million people.
Chesham Town councillor Noel Brown said: “On the one hand we don’t want to become an aging population and we need an influx of younger people. The other side is that it of course brings challenges in terms of schooling and housing. But it’s a challenge that we have to meet.”