Population of Leicester

Leicester is a city and unitary authority in the East Midlands region of England. It is the largest settlement in the country of Leicestershire.

The current population of Leicester is 373,400.

The city’s history can be traced back to the Roman era when a small military outpost was established in AD 57.

During the Industrial Revolution, Leicester became a major commercial and industrial centre.

During the 18th and 19th centuries, the area saw significant industrial development as a result of the construction of major transportation links.

The Leicester and Swannington Railway, for example, was one of England’s first railways. It was constructed in 1832 to transport coal from Leicestershire’s collieries to Leicester. By 1840, the Midland Counties Railway linked Leicester to Nottingham, Derby, and Rugby.

Hosiery, textiles, and footwear industries became major sources of economic growth and employment. In 1801, the population of Leicester was around 20,000. By 1911 it had rocketed to over 229,000.

Leicester has a long history of immigration. People from all over the world have made their homes in Leicester.

In 1972, Idi Amin declared that all Asians living in Uganda had to leave the country. Tens of thousands of Ugandan Asians sought refuge in Leicester as the city already had an established Asian community.

Ugandans have made a significant impact on the city’s culture and economy. The Ugandan community in Leicester is well-known for its entrepreneurial spirit, and many local businesses are owned and operated by Ugandans.

Current Population Statistics

According to data from the UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS), the current population of Leicester is 373,400.

As of , the latest ONS statistics are for 2022.

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

YearTotal Population
of Leicester
Population Aged 0 to 15Population Aged 0 to 15 %Population Aged 16 to 64Population Aged 16 to 64 %Population Aged 65+Population Aged 65+ %
2013338,90072,20021.30228,00067.2838,70011.42
2014342,90073,90021.55229,70066.9939,30011.46
2015349,90075,60021.61234,30066.9639,90011.40
2016356,80077,40021.69238,80066.9340,50011.35
2017361,90078,60021.72242,10066.9041,20011.38
2018367,10079,20021.57245,90066.9842,00011.44
2019369,80079,20021.42247,80067.0142,80011.57
2020368,90078,70021.33246,90066.9343,30011.74
2021366,90077,20021.04246,00067.0543,80011.94
2022373,40077,80020.84250,90067.1944,70011.97

Population Growth

As can be seen from the data in the table above, the population of Leicester increased from 338,900 in 2013 to 373,400 in 2022.

This represents a population growth rate of 10.18%.

Demographics of Leicester - Age Groups

In 2013, 72,200 children lived in Leicester; 21.30% of the total population.

In 2022, 77,800 children lived there, which was 20.84% of the total population. The percentage of children living in Leicester in recent years has been falling.

In 2013, 228,000 adults lived in Leicester, representing 67.28% of the total population.

In 2022, 250,900 adults lived there, representing 67.19% of the total population. The percentage of adults living in Leicester in recent years has been declining.

In 2013, 38,700 elderly people lived in Leicester, 11.42% of the total population.

In 2022, 44,700 elderly people lived there, or 11.97% of the total population. The percentage of elderly people living in Leicester in recent years has been increasing.

Demographics of Leicester - Gender

There are currently more females than males in Leicester.

186,300 males were living there in 2022 (49.89% of the total).

187,100 females were living there in 2022 (50.11% of the total).

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

DateTotalMales%Females%
2013338,900167,10049.31171,70050.66
2014342,900168,80049.23174,10050.77
2015349,900172,90049.41177,00050.59
2016356,800176,60049.50180,20050.50
2017361,900179,20049.52182,70050.48
2018367,100181,70049.50185,40050.50
2019369,800183,00049.49186,70050.49
2020368,900182,50049.47186,40050.53
2021366,900181,40049.44185,60050.59
2022373,400186,30049.89187,10050.11

2021 Census - Leicester

The census is a valuable source of information about the UK, providing statistics on population sizes and social trends.

Since 1801, there has been a census in the United Kingdom every 10 years (with some exceptions).

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is the organization responsible for collecting and publishing official statistics in England and Wales. In Northern Ireland it is the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NIRSA), and in Scotland it is 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 appropriate funding.

The 2021 Census took place on 21 March 2021. It was the first census to be carried out primarily online.

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

The census prior to this was in 2011. Population statistics for Leicester are detailed below.

2011 Census Data - Resident Population of Leicester

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 Leicester was 329,839.

The number of males living in Leicester was 162,884 (49.38% of the total resident population). The number of females was 166,955 (50.62% of the total resident population).

Population Density

Leicester covers an area of 7,331 hectares. The population density was 44.99 persons per hectare.

2011 Census Data - Ethnic Groups in Leicester

Whites were the largest ethnic group in Leicester. 166,636 (50.52%) of the total population of 329,839 identified as white.

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

Asians were the second-largest ethnic group in Leicester. 122,470 (37.13%) of the population identified as Asian.

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

EthnicityNumber%
White166,63650.52
Mixed11,5803.51
Asian122,47037.13
Black20,5856.24
Total329,839100.00

2011 Census Data - Religion in Leicester

Christians were the largest religious group in Leicester. 106,872 (32.40%) of the total population of 329,839 identified as Christian.

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

Muslims were the second-largest religious group in Leicester. 61,440 (18.63%) of the population identified as Muslim.

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

ReligionNumber%
Christian106,87232.40
Muslim61,44018.63
Hindu50,08715.19
Buddhist1,2240.37
Sikh14,4574.38
Jewish2950.09
Other1,8390.56
No Religion75,28022.82
Religion Not Stated18,3455.56
Total329,839100.00

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

218,996 (66.39%) of the 329,839 residents of Leicester were born in the UK; 214,403 in England, 2,330 in Scotland, 1,380 in Wales, and 781 in Northern Ireland.

1,933 (0.59%) were born in the Republic of Ireland, 15,927 (4.83%) in other EU countries, and 92,983 (28.19%) in other countries.

Country of BirthNumber%
England214,40365.00
Scotland2,3300.71
Wales1,3800.42
Northern Ireland7810.24
Republic of Ireland1,9330.59
Other EU15,9274.83
Other Countries92,98328.19
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