Figures show immigration to Northamptonshire hit record level last year
The number of non-UK born people in Northamptonshire increased at its fastest rate ever in 2015, latest figures have shown.
Data released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) shows that 11.8 per cent of the Northamptonshire population is now non-UK born, a total of 84,000 people.
Between January and December last year an estimated 18,000 non-UK born residents moved to the county.
This figure is up from 2014 when it was estimated there were 73,000 non-UK born residents, equivalent to 10.3 per cent of the population.
The data has also been broken down to local authority level and it shows that Corby (21 per cent) and Northampton (15 per cent) have the highest proportion of non-UK born residents.
The figures for the other local authority areas in the county were Daventry (six per cent), South Northants (eight per cent), Kettering (nine per cent), East Northants (nine per cent) and Wellingborough (11 per cent).
Nationally, the figures show that Poland has overtaken India as the most common non-UK country of birth for people living in the UK.
Net migration for the UK was at 327,000 for the year to March, down slightly on the previous year. ONS estimates show 13.3 per cent of the UK population were born abroad, compared with 8.9 per cent in 2004.
There were an estimated 831,000 Polish-born residents in 2015 - a jump of almost 750,000 compared with the number in 2004, the year the country joined the EU. The latest net migration figures show a slowdown in the numbers settling in the UK from Poland and seven other former Eastern bloc countries - but that was offset by an increase in net migration from Bulgaria and Romania, which hit record levels of 60,000.
Nicola White, ONS Head of International Migration Statistics, said: “Net migration remains at record levels although the recent trend is broadly flat.
“The influx of Romanians and Bulgarians has also reached a new high, although that’s off-set by falls in non-EU immigration and from other central and eastern European countries.
“Work remains the main reason for migration, followed by study which has seen a significant fall in the number of people coming to the UK for education.
“It’s important to remember that these figures only go up to the end of March and do not cover the period following the UK’s vote to leave the European Union.”
She said the UK’s population continued to increase between 2014 and 2015, driven by “significant increases in both the non-UK born and non-British national population of the UK”.