More than one in 20 people in City of London identify as English

More than one in 20 people in City of London identify as English, new census figures show – as the nation sees a decline in English identity.

The Union Flag flies at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in Westmister, central London
The Union Flag flies at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in Westmister, central London

More than one in 20 people in City of London identify as English, new census figures show – as the nation sees a decline in English identity.

Jon Wroth-Smith, census deputy director, said the recent data highlights that we are living in an "increasingly multi-cultural society" across England and Wales, with fewer people saying they belong to a particular nation.

The figures from the Office for National Statistics show 6% of people in City of London identified as English only when the census took place last year, and 43% selected British only in the recent survey.

Overall, about 66% of ordinary residents chose any UK identity in 2021, including English, Scottish, Welsh, Northern Irish and Cornish.

Across England and Wales, 90% usual residents identified with at least one UK national identity – a slight decrease from 92% in 2011.

The proportion of people identifying as English only saw the sharpest fall, from 58% selecting the national identity 10 years ago to just 15% last year.

People opting for Welsh only also fell slightly, from 3.7% of the population 10 years ago to 3.2% last year.

Nationally, 55% said they identified as British – leaping from 19% in the previous census.

There is no data for City of London from the 2011 census.

The census also revealed shifts in the ethnicities across England and Wales with the proportion of people identifying as white falling to 81.7% last year from 86.0% in 2011.

And, 74.4% of the total population in identified their ethnic group as white English, Welsh, Scottish, Northern Irish or British in the recent survey – down from 80.5% a decade prior.

About 69% identified as white in City of London with 43% identified as White English, Welsh, Scottish, Northern Irish or British.

Mr Wroth-Smith said: "The percentage of people identifying their ethnic group as 'White: English, Welsh, Scottish, Northern Irish or British', continues to decrease.

"Whilst this remains the most common response to the ethnic group question, the number of people identifying with another ethnic group continues to increase."

In City of London 1,445 residents (17%) identified as Asian or Asian British and 232 (3%) selected black or black British as their ethnicity. A further 470 (5%) said they were mixed ethnicity.