March 12 2014 Latest news:
By Paul Geater
Friday, February 22, 2013
SUFFOLK is a hotspot for “white British” people moving to a new part of the country according to new figures compiled from census returns.
Comparisons between the census returns from 2001 and 2011 show that the number of people who described themselves as white British in London fell by 620,000 – the population of Glasgow.
Meanwhile the white British population of many rural districts rose significantly – and three of the top 12 districts are in Suffolk.
The white British population of Mid Suffolk rose nearly 10% while that of both St Edmundsbury and Forest Heath rose by nearly 9%.
Many East Anglian districts have seen a significant rise in their white British population – a key factor could be improved communications which allow people to live in the region and either commute to London or work online.
Suffolk deputy leader Jane Storey is also a member of Mid Suffolk council, and said the rail link to the City of London was probably a significant factor.
“You have seen this happen along the line – people moved to Colchester, Ipswich, and now Stowmarket because there is a regular, reasonably good service and they can enjoy a much better quality of life in Suffolk than you get living in the capital.
“And house prices are much more reasonable here – in the past people may have moved to the south of London but house prices there are 25% higher than they are in East Anglia,” she said.
Mrs Storey said the growth of the white British population had not stopped Suffolk from becoming a multicultural society.
“We have 90 languages spoken in our schools but there is a higher proportion of white British in Suffolk than in some other parts of the country.
“But I think people from other backgrounds are accepted in Suffolk – they are treated as part of the community.”
The statistics were compiled by the BBC from the census returns of 2001 and 2011.
All districts and boroughs in Suffolk had seen an increase in their white British population.
In Essex most districts and boroughs saw an increase – although Tendring, Epping Forest, Basildon and Thurrock saw very small falls in their white British population.