Sunday 17 November 2019

Changing picture of Louth's demographic

Olivia Ryan

The changing picture of Louth's demographics emerged in the latest analysis of population, society and industry unveiled by the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

Polish nationals account for the largest non-Irish population growth in Louth, according to the latest figures contained in the CSO's Statistical Yearbook of Ireland 2019,

The report indicates the nationality of people living in Louth, including whether they were born in Ireland or abroad.

It was revealed that the largest grouping of non national residents were Polish.

The report shows that there are now up to 2,107 Polish nationals living in Louth, followed by the second largest grouping, 2,021 Lithuanians.

In a changing picture, the number of Polish and Lithuanian nationals was higher than the 2,001 people who were originally from the UK, but now living in Louth.

These findings were also represented when it came to an analysis of the languages most commonly spoken in Louth.

Polish was the most spoken language other than Irish and English with 2,285 Polish people speaking their native tongue. Lithuanian was next with 1,997, followed by French (1,286).

Migration from other countries to Ireland has been highlighted as one of the key reasons for the changing demographics in Louth.

But the launch of many international companies, particularly in Dundalk over recent years, has also led to the recruitment of many foreign language speakers, now resident in Louth for employment purposes.

Along with a look at the overall population breakdown, the CSO figures also highlight other key aspects of living in Louth, such as home ownership and transport.

The statistical yearbook revealed that despite the challenges of the housing sector in recent years, home ownership still remains the most common form of residency.

A total of 31,501 homes in the county were listed as 'owner occupied.' This figures includes houses which were with or without a loan or mortgage. The average house price was listed at €210,000.

But the rental market is also growing, with 11,739 homes listed as rented. A further 2,123 homes were listed as 'Other' which could include social housing.

The figures also looked at the individual circumstances of Louth people, with the report highlighting that 54% of the county were single, 37% were married while 4% were widowed.

The average age of brides was 34.3 years, with grooms getting married at an average age of 36.7 years. The most popular baby names in Louth were James and Emily.

Meanwhile, 59% of people in Louth said they commuted by car. A further 16% walked while 11% got to work or school by bus, coach or minibus.

111,308 people in Louth said their health was 'Good and Very Good', 11,231 said they had 'fair' health while 2,381 said their health was 'bad and very bad'.

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