Census figures shows Longford's population is on the rise

Census figures shows Longford's population is on the rise

The latest results from Census 2016 show that Ireland’s population stood at 4,761,865 in April 2016, an increase of 173,613 (3.8%) since April 2011. 

The population of Co Longford now stands at 40,873, an increase of 4.8% over the last five years and the county now has the largest traveller population in the country living here. 

Nationally, the total number of non-Irish nationals has fallen slightly to 535,475, or 11.6% of the population and this is the first decline since 2002.

The number of people with dual-Irish nationality had increased by 48,879 to 104,784 people since April 2011. 

Neil Nugent from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) said that Longford showed an increase of 1% above the national average on population increase.

The reason for this, he added, will be considered in the coming months. 

Nationally, there are more women than men, but that trend has been bucked in Longford, Leitrim and Roscommon. 

“In Longford there are 300 more males than females,” continued Mr Nugent who then pointed out that there were 210 more males than females in Co Roscommon.  

“The average age is also increasing and if we look at Longford, we see that the average age is the same as the national average which is 37.4 an increase from 36.4 in the last Census.”

In Leitrim, the average is 39.8 while in Co Roscommon it is 39.7. 

Meanwhile, there has been an increase in the number of people divorced in the region. 

The national average on this stands at 4.7%, while in Longford it is 4.6% - just ever so slightly below the national average. 

It appears too, that the country is losing it’s Gaelgeoirs.

14,000 people in Co Longford admitted to being able to speak Irish on Census night, but those who can speak it fluently amounted to just 257, while there are 505 people in Co Roscommon. 

The Census results also indicate that Co Longford has the highest proportion of Irish travellers residing here. 

“This particular aspect has shown a huge increase in Longford since 2011,” added Mr Nugent. 

“The number of travellers living in Longford is just over 1,000 and that indicates an increase of 41%.”

Broadband has been a bone of contention for businesses and homeowners alike in Longford for the last few years and the lack of services have also been highlighted in the latest Census results. 

“The overall broadband access level is at 71%,” said Mr Nugent, before pointing out that Longford, Leitrim and Roscommon were all lagging behind this. 

“Longford’s levels are between 58% and 60% and this indicates clearly that services need to be improved.”