Although the British census can be irritating and newspaper scare stories are rife around the time you have to fill one in, when the statistics hit the headlines, everyone is interested. The latest census tells us that there are more atheists in Britain than ever before, around a quarter of the population ticking the ‘no religion’ box. British people have fallen out of love with marriage and 44 out of 5 Brits view themselves as being in good health. From the perspective of language it is interesting to note that almost one in 8 people living in Britain were not born in Britain.

India accounts for the largest foreign-born population, overtaking Ireland, followed by Poland with an increase of 500,000 people coming to England and Wales in the last decade, spurred by its accession to the European Union in 2004. About half of the foreign-born residents arrived between 2001 and 2011.

The largest increase in the foreign-born population was in London, where more than a third of residents were born abroad – almost a quarter were not British nationals.

With so many people in Britain not being British nationals, this is having an effect on the languages being spoken within Britain today.

The status of English as the main language is also changing – 1.2m households now include no adults for whom English is their main language. The census found 31,000 households in Birmingham and more than 21,000 each in Manchester and Leicester had no one resident for whom English was the main language.

With so many languages within the melting pot of Britain it’s likely that language skills will become even more important in the future.

[via: The Guardian]