The latest estimates from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show that Poland is now the most common non-UK nationality of the British population, followed by India and Pakistan.
The Annual Population Survey (APS) revealed that in 2015 Poland was the birth country of 831,000 UK residents.
These are greater numbers than India (795,000, which still leads London) and Pakistan (503,000). The increase in the Polish community is linked to a significant flux of EU migrants, which has tripled to 3.1 million since 2004.
In 2015, 1 in 8 (13.3%) of the resident population of the UK were born abroad, which compares with 1 in 11 (8.9%) in 2004.
There were also significant increases in the UK populations of Romanian and Portuguese, on the rise since 2004. On the other hand, Irish nationals have decreased by 12.4% since 2004.
Nicola White of the Migration Statistics Unit of the ONS said: “Poland is now the most common non-UK country of birth, overtaking India for the first time.”
“The number of Polish born citizens living in the UK has continued to increase since Poland joined the EU and the number of UK residents born in Poland was eight times higher in 2015 compared with 2004.”
Net migration has also reached a record 327,000 in 2015. Immigration of EU citizens (268,000) remains lower than that of non-EU citizens (282,000).
“Net migration remains at record levels”, Nicola said, although it is a prevalent trend.
“Work remains the main reason for migration, followed by study which has seen a significant fall in the number of people coming to the UK for education.”
“It’s important to remember that these figures only go up to the end of March and do not cover the period following the UK’s vote to leave the European Union.”