Nearly three in 10 babies have mothers born outside the UK – and in parts of London the figure is over 75%

The proportion of babies born to women from outside the UK has hit a record level of 27.5 per cent.

In parts of London more than three quarters of children had non-British born mothers.

New figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that there were 192,227 live births to women born abroad last year.

Women born in this country had 505,588 children, according to the data covering England and Wales.

Polish-born mothers registered 22,928 babies, and were followed by Pakistan and India-born women as the highest from outside the UK.

ONS figures have shown the proportion of live births to women born outside the UK in England and Wales in 2015  

ONS figures have shown the proportion of live births to women born outside the UK in England and Wales in 2015

The percentage was up from 27 per cent last year. The number of children for UK-born women fell 0.4 per cent, while the figures for those born abroad went up 2.5 per cent.

Some 76.5 per cent of babies in Newham in east London had mothers born outside the UK.

Outside of London, Slough had the highest percentage at 62.0 per cent, followed by Luton  with 56.4 per cent.

By contrast just 11 per cent of live births in the North East were to women born outside of Britain.

ONS spokeswoman Elizabeth McLaren said: ‘The rising percentage of births to women born outside the UK is largely due to foreign born women making up an increasing share of the female population of childbearing age in England and Wales.

‘Part of the reason for this is that migrants are more likely to be working-age adults rather than children or older people.

‘Alongside their increasing share of the population, higher fertility among women born outside the UK has also had an impact.’

Poland has overtaken India as the most common non-UK country of birth

Poland is the most common overseas country of birth for people living in the UK for the first time.

There were an estimated 831,000 Polish-born residents in 2015 – a jump of almost three quarters of a million compared to the number in 2004 when the country joined the EU.

It meant Poland overtook India, which had 795,000 people last year, as the most common non-UK nation of birth.

Polish was also the most common non-British nationality, with an estimated 916,000 residents.

Figures are compiled both by both country of birth and nationality, which can be subject to change.

Overall, one in eight (13.3 per cent) of the people living in the UK were born abroad last year – compared to one in 11 in 2004.

There was a ‘statistically significant increase’ in the non-UK born population of the UK between 2014 and 2015, rising from 8.3 million to 8.6 million, the Office for National Statistics said.

In 2015, 1 in 12 (8.7 per cent) of the ‘usual resident population’ of the UK had non-British nationality, which compares with 1 in 20 (5 per cent) in 2004.

There was a ‘statistically significant’ increase in the non-British national population between 2014 and 2015, increasing from 5.3 million to 5.6 million.

Within that number, there were 3.2 million EU citizens, a rise of 300,000, or 7.5 per cent on 2014. The number of Romanian and Bulgarian nationals living in the UK increased by 28 per cent to just under 300,000.

The total number of EU nationals living in the UK has almost tripled since 2004, when it was 1.1 million.

Nicola White, of the ONS, said: ‘The population of the UK continued to increase between 2014 and 2015, driven by significant increases in both the non-UK born and non-British national population of the UK.

‘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.’

The Brexit vote led to scrutiny of the status of EU nationals living in the UK.

Madeleine Sumption, director of the Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford said: ‘These data come at a time of considerable uncertainty for EU migrants living in the UK, as most EU migrants are not UK citizens.

‘Although the Government has committed in principle to allow EU migrants to remain in the UK, there are many unresolved questions about their status.’


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