Recent figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reveal that about 340,498 residents of the capital city prefer living in other parts of the UK over London.
One of the attributed reasons for the change includes property prices, which is why Londoners are preferring the South Coast. Experts attribute inflated house prices and fierce crime for the exodus from the capital city. According to reports, this number has been marked the highest ever since the ONS began collecting data in 2012.
“Obviously people also want a better quality of life, but they also want access to good schools, to live in rural areas and to get away from the stabbings,” commented Christopher Snowdon, head at the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) and expert on lifestyle economics. Moreover, “property prices are a big deal,” Snowdon added.
According to reports released by ONS, the South East has been a popular preference among people and the number is increasing. In 2017, there were 336,010 people, while there were 291,630 in 2016, who left London. This has been observed as a continuously rising trend; with 283,0000 in 2015, 273,0000 in 2014, 251,00 in 2013 and 255,140 in 2012.
Furthermore, ONS data released in April also holds knife crime as an important reason for the exodus. Manslaughter and murder have peaked to a record high in 2018, with at least 732 killings.
One of the reasons for attraction towards the capital city is the quality of Universities and career opportunities. This is one of the major reasons to attract the youth population to London. While the city is losing out on the older population and families with children.
According to a statement by Neil Park, head of the ONS’s population estimates unit, UK’s population growth in the last two years has been at the lowest rate since 2004.
“For the fifth year in a row, net international migration was a bigger driver of population change than births and deaths. However, overall population change to the year mid-2018 has remained fairly stable, as an increase in net international migration has been roughly matched by the fewest births in over a decade and the highest number of deaths since the turn of the century,” Park added.
The figure stated by the ONS is related to 2018. The figure hence does not account the uncertainty due to Brexit. Moreover, it only tracks internal migration and does not study migration from sources outside the UK.