Population of Bradford

Bradford is a city and metropolitan borough in West Yorkshire, England.

The metropolitan borough includes Bradford itself plus outlying towns and villages such as Bingley, Denholme, Haworth, Ilkley, Keighley, Queensbury, Shipley, Silsden, and Thornton.

The borough is administered by the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council.

The current population of Bradford (metropolitan borough) is 552,600.

Bradford became well known in the 19th century as a major center of textile production, especially wool. The economic expansion resulted in a population boom.

In 1801 the population of the district was around 52,000. By 1911, the population had increased to over 436,000 people as workers moved in search of employment in the textile mills.

During the 1820s and 1830s, many people came to Bradford from Germany. Many of them were Jewish merchants.

They built warehouses to cash in on Bradford’s fast-growing textile industry in a cluster of streets in the town centre known as Little Germany.

Irish immigration to Bradford increased in the 1840s and 1850s when thousands of people fled Ireland in response to the Irish Potato Famine.

The next major wave of immigration began in the 1950s and came from South Asia, mainly Pakistan. Even though most people arrived to work in the textile mills, the industry’s collapse caused workers to seek employment in other sectors.

Bradford now has one of the highest South Asian populations in the UK. At the time of the last census, 24.70% of the total population identified as Muslim.

Bradford has a younger population than the national average, with proportionally more young people.

Current Population Statistics

According to data from the UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS), the current population of Bradford is 552,600.

As of , the latest ONS statistics are for 2022.

The table below shows the population statistics for Bradford in recent years, split by age group.

YearTotal Population
of Bradford
Population Aged 0 to 15Population Aged 0 to 15 %Population Aged 16 to 64Population Aged 16 to 64 %Population Aged 65+Population Aged 65+ %

Population Growth

As can be seen from the data in the table above, the population of Bradford increased from 528,700 in 2013 to 552,600 in 2022.

This represents a population growth rate of 4.52%.

Demographics of Bradford - Age Groups

In 2013, 124,100 children lived in Bradford; 23.47% of the total population.

In 2022, 124,900 children lived there, which was 22.60% of the total population. The percentage of children living in Bradford in recent years has been falling.

In 2013, 331,000 adults lived in Bradford, representing 62.61% of the total population.

In 2022, 342,800 adults lived there, representing 62.03% of the total population. The percentage of adults living in Bradford in recent years has been declining.

In 2013, 73,600 elderly people lived in Bradford, 13.92% of the total population.

In 2022, 85,000 elderly people lived there, or 15.38% of the total population. The percentage of elderly people living in Bradford in recent years has been increasing.

Demographics of Bradford - Gender

There are currently more females than males in Bradford.

271,200 males were living there in 2022 (49.08% of the total).

281,500 females were living there in 2022 (50.94% of the total).

Population statistics by gender for Bradford between 2013 and 2022 are shown in the table below.


2021 Census - Bradford

The census is a snapshot of the United Kingdom that includes important data on population figures and social changes.

A census has been held in the United Kingdom every 10 years (with a few exceptions), every year since 1801.

They are currently run in England and Wales by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), in Northern Ireland by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NIRSA), and in Scotland by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

Census statistics provide detailed information about national and local demographics. Data from the census is used to help run public services, develop policies, and allocate funding.

The most recent UK census took place in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland on 21 March 2021. Scotland delayed the census to 2022 due to the pandemic.

The statistics from the 2021 Census for England, Wales, and Northern Ireland will be issued in summer 2022.

The 2011 census was prior to this. Demographics for Bradford are listed below.

2011 Census Data - Resident Population of Bradford

As of today, the most recent published UK Census data was for 2011. Results of the 2011 United Kingdom Census showed that the total population of Bradford was 522,452.

The number of males living in Bradford was 257,132 (49.22% of the total resident population). The number of females was 265,320 (50.78% of the total resident population).

Population Density

Bradford covers an area of 36,642 hectares. The population density was 14.26 persons per hectare.

2011 Census Data - Ethnic Groups in Bradford

Whites were the largest ethnic group in Bradford. 352,317 (67.44%) of the total population of 522,452 identified as white.

Bradford has a lower percentage white population than the average for England (85.42%).

Asians were the second-largest ethnic group in Bradford. 140,149 (26.83%) of the population identified as Asian.

Bradford has a higher percentage Asian population than the average for England (7.82%).


2011 Census Data - Religion in Bradford

Christians were the largest religious group in Bradford. 239,843 (45.91%) of the total population of 522,452 identified as Christian.

Bradford has a lower percentage Christian population than the average for England (59.38%).

Muslims were the second-largest religious group in Bradford. 129,041 (24.70%) of the population identified as Muslim.

Bradford has a higher percentage Muslim population than the average for England (5.02%).

No Religion108,02720.68
Religion Not Stated32,5496.23

2011 Census Data - Resident Population of Bradford - Country of Birth

432,843 (82.85%) of the 522,452 residents of Bradford were born in the UK; 425,290 in England, 4,429 in Scotland, 1,719 in Wales, and 1,362 in Northern Ireland.

2,123 (0.41%) were born in the Republic of Ireland, 16,384 (3.14%) in other EU countries, and 71,102 (13.61%) in other countries.

Country of BirthNumber%
Northern Ireland1,3620.26
Republic of Ireland2,1230.41
Other EU16,3843.14
Other Countries71,10213.61

Location and Transport

Bradford is in West Yorkshire, on the outskirts of the Pennines.

It is bounded by Leeds, Kirklees, Calderdale, Pendle, Craven, and Harrogate.

The M606 connects Bradford to the M62 and the national motorway network.

Train stations in the metropolitan borough include Bradford Interchange, Bradford Forster Square, Bingley, Ilkley, Keighley, and Shipley. The busiest stations are Bradford Interchange and Bradford Forster Square.

Leeds Bradford Airport lies 6 miles northeast of Bradford city centre.