Census 2011: We’re Older Than Most And Mortgage Free But Probably Cold

A detailed breakdown of the 2011 census figures, released this week, show how life in Scilly can be very different to that on the mainland.

Our population has increased by 50 from the 2001 survey and now stands at 2,203. But the figures show we have the lowest proportion of 16 to 19 year olds in England and Wales, at 1.5% versus the average of 5.1%.

That’s likely a reflection of the islands’ children having to leave to continue their post-16 education on the mainland.

The average age of our population, at 44.7 years is in the top 5% of local authorities, as is the number of people living past their 90th birthday.

We’re in the bottom 5 for the proportion of single people on the islands, and it seems that when married people in Scilly end a relationship, they make it permanent, with the second lowest rate of people classified as ‘separated but still legally-married.’

And according to the figures, we don’t have a single, same-sex civil partnership on the islands, the lowest rate in the country.

There are 989 ‘households’ in Scilly, but 3.6% of us live communally. That’s in the top 10% of all authorities, with the table headed by the university towns of Oxford and Cambridge.

That statistic is probably a result of the high numbers of seasonal workers here, who live in shared accommodation.

1% of households here are occupied solely by people aged over 65. That’s more than three times the national average.

And homes here are more likely than almost any other area to have no children and to be mortgage-free.

We have the highest proportion of privately rented properties in the country, at 9.1% against an average of 1.4%.

And it appears that almost 30% of our homes don’t have any permanent residents at all, again, higher than anywhere else and probably due to the large number of holiday homes here.

But if you’ve managed to find somewhere to live, and you’ve paid off your mortgage, you might still find things uncomfortable here in winter.

Scilly has by far the lowest proportion of homes with central heating in the country.