Thursday 15 November 2018

Census 2011: Read the highlights of the CSO’s latest report

More women than men

There were 42,854 more females than males in the State in April 2011 resulting in an overall sex ratio of 98.1 males for every 100 females. This is a reversal of the situation in 2006 when the sex ratio was 100.1.

Continued increase in numbers divorced

The number of divorced people in Ireland has increased by 150.3pc since 2002, up from 35,059 to 87,770 in the most recent census. In contrast the number of people identified as separated has levelled off and stood at 116,194, up marginally from 107,263 in 2006.

Born abroad

The number of Irish residents who were born outside Ireland continues to increase and stood at 766,770 in 2011 an increase of 25pc on 2006, and accounting for 17pc of the population.

The groups which showed the largest increase were those already well established in Ireland. The fastest growing groups were Romanians (up 110pc), Indians (up 91pc), Polish (up 83pc), Lithuanians (up 40pc) and Latvians (up 43pc).


Immigration by Irish nationals was 19,593 in the year to April 2011, of which 7,338 had previously lived in the UK, followed by Australia as the second most important country of origin (3,921) and the USA in third place with 1,688.

Immigration by foreign nationals in the year to April 2011 was 33,674. No one country of origin stands out, but rather the data shows immigrants came from a large selection of countries. The largest groups came from Poland, UK, France, Lithuania, Spain and the USA.

A multi lingual country

A question on foreign languages was asked for the first time in census 2011. The results show that over half a million (514,068) Irish residents spoke a foreign language at home and that, unsurprisingly, Polish was by far the most common, followed by French, Lithuanian and German.

Increase in Irish Traveller numbers

The number of people enumerated as Irish Travellers in Census 2011 increased by 32pc from 22,435 to 29,573, with all counties apart from Limerick and Waterford showing increases larger than the increase in the general population.


Almost 475,000 households in Ireland were renting their accommodation on census night 2011. This is a significant increase since Census 2006 when just over 300,000 households were renting.

Central heating

A new question on Census 2011 asked about the type of fuel used in central heating systems. Fossil fuels topped the responses with oil, natural gas and coal being used to heat 4 out of 5 Irish homes.

There was a clear urban/rural split with almost 70pc of households in rural areas using oil to heat their homes while in towns and cities 52pc of homes used natural gas.

Vacant houses

Total housing stock grew to almost 2 million homes, of these almost 290,000 were vacant on Census night giving a vacancy rate of 14.5pc. Leitrim had the highest overall vacancy rate with over 30pc of homes vacant. Donegal was next with a vacancy rate of 29pc.

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