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Feb 20 2013

2011 Census – Language Proficiency in Harrow

censuslogoThe 2011 Census was taken on 27th March 2011 and outputs from the Census are being released in phases by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The latest set of Key and Quick Statistics were released on 30th January 2013 and this paper reports largely on outputs from this release covering Main Language and Proficiency in English.

At least 88 different languages are ‘spoken’ in Harrow, including three categories of sign language. Not all languages have been specifically identified by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) in their reporting on this question. For example, only twelve different African languages have been specified, with the rest being summarised under three general headings. In reality there are over 2,000 different languages spoken in Africa.

  • English is the main language spoken amongst Harrow’s residents, with 71.5 per cent (164,051) of residents, below London’s level of 77.9 per cent and the national (England and Wales) level of 92.3 per cent
  • Harrow is ranked 9th lowest nationally, based on the percentage of residents whose main language is English
  • 28.5 per cent (65,347) of Harrow’s residents have a foreign first language
  • Harrow’s second most commonly spoken language is Gujarati, with 20,368 speakers, 8.9 per cent of residents. Nationally Polish is the second most widely spoken language (in Wales Polish comes second to English or Welsh as the most widely spoken language).
  • Tamil is Harrow’s third most prolifically spoken language, with 8,304 speakers or 3.6 per cent of residents. Nationally Panjabi is the third most widely spoken language.
  • Harrow is ranked 8th nationally for linguistic diversity in the Greater London Authority’s Linguistic Diversity Index (based on Simpson’s Diversity Index Methodology)
  • Just under 1 per cent (2,025) of all Harrow’s residents (aged three and over) cannot speak English at all. This is higher than London’s level of 0.6 per cent and the national level of 0.3 per cent.
  • A further 9,900 (4.3%) of all residents said that they do not speak English well. Again this level is higher than both London’s overall level of 3.5 per cent and the national level of 0.3 per cent.
  • In 15.9 per cent (13,415) of households English is not the main language of any household occupants, the 10th highest ranking nationally and much higher than the national level of 4.3 per cent

You can download the complete paper here.

Source: Harrow Council

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