Change in Dorset’s demographic make-up can have an impact on service demands and provision for local authorities but can also affect housing demand and business needs.

Changes in our population are shaped by both natural change (births and deaths) and by migration into and out of Dorset.

By projecting future population change, we can plan to target services and resources to the places where they will be needed most.

All data relates to statistics that pre-date Covid unless stated otherwise

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Population change in Dorset

  • Since 2009 the death rate has steadily increased while the birth rate has decreased. This pattern is projected to continue over the next ten years
  • Over the period 2009-2019, Dorset’s population grew by 14,940, a growth of 4% compared with 8% nationally.
  • Over the period 2019 to 2019 the population is projected to grow by another 4% (16,300) compared to 5% nationally.

Age breakdown of population change

  • Over the period 2009-2019, the number aged 65+ grew by 23,200 – up by 27% and is projected to increase by 24,000—up by 22% - to 2029.
  • The proportion of the population aged 65+ continues to grow; from 24% in 2009 to 29% in 2019 and a projected figure of 34% in 2029.
  • In contrast Dorset’s working age (16-64) population continues to fall; dropping by 7,700 between 2009 and 2019 and projected to drop by a further 4,200 by 2029.
  • Similarly the population of Dorset’s children continues to decline; falling by 500 between 2009 and 2019 and projected to drop by a further 3,500
  • The median age of the Dorset council area was 46.9 in 2009. This increased to 52.0 in 2019 and is projected to increase to 54.4 by 2029. The current median age for England is 40.
  • The top heavy shape of the population pyramid has changed little in the past 10 years and is not projected to change over the next ten.
Dorset Council 2009, 2019 and 2029 population
Dorset Council 2009, 2019 and 2029 population

What are we doing about it?

Population data at a wide range of geographies is released annually by the Office for National Statistics. Official projections are released biannually at Local Authority level. In Dorset Council we analyse demographic data and run our own bespoke projections at smaller areas to provide bespoke population profiles.

Information on population is key to all aspects of service provision within the authority. Looking at both past trends and projected scenarios allows us to effectively plan services for the people of Dorset. Analysis of population allows us to:

  • Plan for adequate social care and suitable housing for our elderly population.
  • Promote growth in the economic sector for our working age population.
  • Provide sufficient school places and targeted resources for our children.

Headline Figures

4%

Projected population change 2019-2029

378,500

Total population in 2019

23,200

Increase in +65s 2009-2019, an increase of 2.4%pa

2%pa

+65s projected population change 2019-2029

500

Decrease in 0-15yrs 2009-2019

Headline Figures

4%

Projected population change 2019-2029

378,500

Total population in 2019

23,200

Increase in +65s 2009-2019, an increase of 2.4%pa

2%pa

+65s projected population change 2019-2029

500

Decrease in 0-15yrs 2009-2019


Sources

  • 2019 Mid-year estimates, Office for National Statistics
  • 2019 Components of Population Change, Office for National Statistics
  • 2019 based Dorset Council Continuity projections, Experimental, Dorset Council

44 Reports

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21 Related Datasets

Order by: Newest first

  • 2020 Mid-Year Estimates, Unitary Authority, Historical District and above

    Published: 27 July 2021

    Annual Mid-Year Estimates produced by the Office for National Statistics

    Downloads: 133

  • 2019 Ward Level Population Estimates

    Published: 23 December 2020

    2019 Office for National Statistics Experimental Population Estimates for Dorset wards

    Downloads: 530

  • National Insurance Registrations to overseas Nationals 2019-20

    Published: 09 December 2020

    National Insurance Registrations to overseas Nationals 2019-20

    Downloads: 291

  • Internal Migration for Mid-Years 2002-2019

    Published: 08 December 2020

    Internal Migration by 5 year age group for Dorset Council and Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Council

    Downloads: 331

  • Births Deaths and Natural Change by Country and Local Authority

    Published: 08 December 2020

    Local Authority births, deaths and natural change from Mid-Years 2002 to 2019

    Downloads: 274

  • International Migration for Mid-Years 2002-2019

    Published: 08 December 2020

    International Migration by 5 year age group for Dorset Council and Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Council

    Downloads: 247

  • Life Expectancy at birth and age 65, 2019

    Published: 07 December 2020

    Life expectancy at birth and age 65 by sex for Local Authority geography and above.

    Downloads: 243

  • ONS Sexual Orientation Data at LA Geography (experimental dataset)

    Published: 27 November 2020

    Office for National Statistics experimental data on sexual orientation at LA Geography 2016-2018

    Downloads: 235

  • Data for EqIAs (diversity data)

    Published: 14 November 2020

    Various diversity data for Dorset with national comparators. For assistance in completing Equality Impact Assessments (EqIAs).

    Downloads: 228

  • 2018 based Household Projections

    Published: 20 July 2020

    Office for National Statistics 2018 based Household Projections for Dorset

    Downloads: 695

  • 2018 based ONS Population Projections for Dorset

    Published: 07 July 2020

    2018 based Office for National Statistics Sub National Population Projections for current and former Dorset geographies in five year age groups.

    Downloads: 697

  • 2018 Parish Level Mid Year Population Estimates

    Published: 23 March 2020

    2018 best fit Output Area population to parish geography for all persons by five year age groups.

    Downloads: 574

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019- National and Dorset Council Ranks

    Published: 03 January 2020

    The English Indices of Deprivation helps identify and prioritise areas to assist the government and other agencies both national and local in narrowing the gap between deprived neighbourhoods and the rest of the country.

    Downloads: 582

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - South East Dorset Sub Unitary Geography (SUG) Maps

    Published: 11 December 2019

    This pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across South East Dorset SUG area for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 807

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - Dorset West Sub Unitary Geography (SUG) Maps

    Published: 11 December 2019

    This pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across Dorset West SUG area for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 865

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - Dorset East Sub Unitary Geography (SUG) Maps

    Published: 11 December 2019

    This pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across Dorset East SUG area for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 619

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - Dorset North Sub Unitary Geography (SUG) Maps

    Published: 11 December 2019

    This pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across Dorset North SUG area for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 765

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - Mid Dorset Sub Unitary Geography (SUG) Maps

    Published: 11 December 2019

    This pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across Mid Dorset SUG area for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 789

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - Dorset South Sub Unitary Geography (SUG) Maps

    Published: 11 December 2019

    This pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across Dorset South SUG area for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 535

  • Indices of Deprivation 2019 - Dorset Council Maps

    Published: 25 November 2019

    The combined map base pdf illustrates national deprivation levels at a small geography across Dorset for 2019. There are sixteen maps which look at a range of components of deprivation including health, income, employment, education and skills, living environment, crime and barriers to housing and services. There is also a multiple deprivation (IMD) map that combines all these aspects of deprivation to give us an overall picture for Dorset. The document also has a number of maps that look at specific aspects (sub domains) such as deprivation affecting children and outdoor living environment.

    Downloads: 519

  • Ethnicity

    Published: 01 January 2011

    Broad and detailed ethnic population data at District level and above

    Downloads: 983

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