Wigan Population

Wigan is a town and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England.

The metropolitan borough includes Wigan plus towns such as Atherton, Ashton-in-Makerfield, Golborne, Hindley, Ince, Leigh, and Tyldesley.

The current population of the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan is 330,700. It is the second most populated borough of Greater Manchester.

Wigan is the largest settlement in the borough and its administrative centre. Wigan Council is the local authority.

The population of Wigan grew rapidly during the Victorian era. It was a major centre for textile production and coal mining.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal passes through Wigan and Leigh. Wigan Pier, a wharf on the canal, was made famous by George Orwell’s book, The Road to Wigan Pier. The book is his account of the social injustice, slum housing, and poor working conditions endured by the working-class population of towns in northern England in the 1930s.

Pennington Flash, a large lake formed by mining subsidence, is now one of the most beautiful nature reserves in North West England.

Current Population Statistics

According to data from the UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS), the current population of Wigan is 330,700.

As of , the latest ONS statistics are for 2020.

The table below details population statistics for Wigan over the past few years, split by age group.

YearTotal Population
of Wigan
Population Aged 0 to 15Population Aged 0 to 15 %Population Aged 16 to 64Population Aged 16 to 64 %Population Aged 65+Population Aged 65+ %
2011318,10059,90018.83206,20064.8252,00016.35
2012318,70059,80018.76204,50064.1754,50017.10
2013319,80059,90018.73203,70063.7056,30017.60
2014321,10060,20018.75202,90063.1958,00018.06
2015322,20060,30018.72202,60062.8859,40018.44
2016323,50060,60018.73202,60062.6360,40018.67
2017324,70060,80018.72202,80062.4661,10018.82
2018326,10061,20018.77203,00062.2561,80018.95
2019328,70061,80018.80204,00062.0662,90019.14
2020330,70062,00018.75205,30062.0863,40019.17

Population Growth

As can be seen from the data in the table above, the population of Wigan increased from 318,100 in 2011 to 330,700 in 2020.

This represents a population growth rate of 3.96%.

Demographics of Wigan - Age Groups

In 2011, 59,900 children lived in Wigan; 18.83% of the total population.

In 2020, 62,000 children lived there, which was 18.75% of the total population. The percentage of children living in Wigan in recent years has been falling.

In 2011, 206,200 adults lived in Wigan, representing 64.82% of the total population.

In 2020, 205,300 adults lived there, representing 62.08% of the total population. The percentage of adults living in Wigan in recent years has been declining.

In 2011, 52,000 elderly people lived in Wigan, 16.35% of the total population.

In 2020, 63,400 elderly people lived there, or 19.17% of the total population. The percentage of elderly people living in Wigan in recent years has been increasing.

Demographics of Wigan - Gender

There are currently more females than males in Wigan.

164,900 males were living there in 2020 (49.86% of the total).

165,800 females were living there in 2020 (50.14% of the total).

Population statistics by gender for Wigan between 2011 and 2020 are shown in the table below.

DateTotalMales%Females%
2011318,100158,10049.70160,10050.33
2012318,700158,40049.70160,30050.30
2013319,800159,00049.72160,80050.28
2014321,100159,60049.70161,50050.30
2015322,200160,40049.78161,90050.25
2016323,500161,30049.86162,20050.14
2017324,700162,00049.89162,70050.11
2018326,100162,60049.86163,50050.14
2019328,700164,00049.89164,70050.11
2020330,700164,90049.86165,80050.14

2021 Census - Wigan

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 UK every 10 years (with some exceptions).

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).

The census data provides a detailed view of the UK. The census data is used by the government to plan and deliver public services, develop regulations, and allocate funds.

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 data from the 2021 Census for England, Wales, and Northern Ireland will be released in summer 2022.

The census before this took place in 2011. Data about Wigan is below.

2011 Census Data - Resident Population of Wigan

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 Wigan was 317,849.

The number of males living in Wigan was 157,996 (49.71% of the total resident population). The number of females was 159,853 (50.29% of the total resident population).

Population Density

Wigan covers an area of 18,819 hectares. The population density was 16.89 persons per hectare.

2011 Census Data - Ethnic Groups in Wigan

Whites were the largest ethnic group in Wigan. 309,193 (97.28%) of the total population of 317,849 identified as white.

Wigan has a higher percentage white population than the average for England (85.42%).

Asians were the second-largest ethnic group in Wigan. 3,519 (1.11%) of the population identified as Asian.

Wigan has a lower percentage Asian population than the average for England (7.82%).

EthnicityNumber%
White309,19397.28
Mixed2,7560.87
Asian3,5191.11
Black1,6780.53
Total317,849100.00

2011 Census Data - Religion in Wigan

Christians were the largest religious group in Wigan. 247,223 (77.78%) of the total population of 317,849 identified as Christian.

Wigan has a higher percentage Christian population than the average for England (59.38%).

Muslims were the second-largest religious group in Wigan. 2,162 (0.68%) of the population identified as Muslim.

Wigan has a lower percentage Muslim population than the average for England (5.02%).

ReligionNumber%
Christian247,22377.78
Muslim2,1620.68
Hindu6820.21
Buddhist7030.22
Sikh620.02
Jewish710.02
Other6890.22
No Religion48,64015.30
Religion Not Stated17,6175.54
Total317,849100.00

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

306,656 (96.48%) of the 317,849 residents of Wigan were born in the UK; 301,879 in England, 2,371 in Scotland, 1,599 in Wales, and 792 in Northern Ireland.

1,131 (0.36%) were born in the Republic of Ireland, 3,980 (1.25%) in other EU countries, and 6,082 (1.91%) in other countries.

Country of BirthNumber%
England301,87994.98
Scotland2,3710.75
Wales1,5990.50
Northern Ireland7920.25
Republic of Ireland1,1310.36
Other EU3,9801.25
Other Countries6,0821.91

Location

Wigan lies roughly midway between Liverpool and Manchester.

The Metropolitan Borough of Wigan is bordered by Bolton to the northeast, Salford to the east, Warrington to the south, St Helens to the southwest, West Lancashire to the West, and Chorley to the north.

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