Birstall Information

1991 Census

Extracts from the Birstall and Wanlip census returns

Compiled by Michael J.Smith

Do you remember chewing your pencil and filling in those seemingly endless forms back in 1991? Here are some of the statistics from your efforts:- On the day of the census there were 11,770 people living in the civil parish of Birstall and 181 in Wanlip of which 49% were male in both villages. There were 942 [7.6%] less people in Birstall than in 1981 and 29[19.2%] more in Wanlip. The chart shows that the majority of people were aged between 30 and pensionable age [*averaged at 62 for convenience on the chart] 94.7% were classified as white, 4.5% as Asian, 0.2% as Black, 0.6% as Others. In the Borough of Charnwood there were 93.8% whites and for the whole of the County the figure was 88.9% whites.

There were 4648 dwellings in Birstall of which 92% were owner occupied, on the day of the census 4508 of the houses had residents. Almost half of the houses had six or more rooms and 58 had two rooms or less. In Wanlip there were 59 dwellings, 46 were owner occupied and 43 had six rooms or more. In Birstall 902[20%] of the homes are occupied by only one person and of these 111 were over the age of 85 years old.

Of the 9,547 Birstall residents aged 16+, 6,231 are described as "economically active", 3,500 males and 2,731 females. Of these 5,894 were in employment, [768 self-employed], 57 on a government training scheme and 280[4,5%] unemployed.[see chart 2] In Wanlip there were 154 aged 16+, 112 "economically active",107 in employment, [27 self-employed] and 5[4.5%] unemployed.
One third of Birstall's population aged 16+ is defined as "economically inactive" of these 179 were permanently sick, 1918[16.3% of the total population] retired and 1210 "others", there over twice as many "inactive" females than males. In Wanlip there were 39 "inactive", [9 males and 30 females], 4 permanently sick, 13 retired and 22 "others".
The third chart shows the number of cars owned by each household in the villages, there were 881 homes without cars in Birstall and only 5 in Wanlip, 50% of homes in Birstall had one car and 43% of homes in Wanlip had two cars. In Birstall there were at least 5,254 cars and in Wanlip at least 90.

The census return also listed the lack of amenities in some households, there were 351 homes in Birstall without central heating and 5 in Wanlip, there were 37 homes in Birstall without a bath and/or a WC.
In Birstall 21.5% of the householders had two or more dependants, in Wanlip there were 16.4%. In Birstall and Wanlip there were a total of 5 male single parents and 63 female single parents.
As a matter of interest the total population of Birstall in 1891 was 566.
Source:- 1991 census data, published by Leics. County Council. A copy is available at Birstall Library.

Mike Smith