Useful links


Welcome to the Population section of Cumbria’s Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) 2015 onwards.

To view the latest JSNA population chapter please click on the link below:

JSNA Population Chapter (January 2015)

Key issues and recommendations

As summarised in the above chapter:

  • Cumbria is England’s second largest county and is much less densely populated than the national average;

  • Population density varies across Cumbria’s six districts; from 25 people per km2 in Eden to 870 people per km2 in Barrow-in-Furness;

  • Allerdale was the only Cumbrian district to become less densely populated during the workday. Inversely, Carlisle, Copeland and Barrow-in-Furness became more densely populated during the workday;

  • 54% of Cumbria’s residents live in rural areas compared to 18% nationally;

  • Of Cumbria’s districts, Allerdale and Eden have the greatest proportions of residents living in rural areas (72% and 71% respectively), while Carlisle has the smallest proportion (27%);

  • 84 of Cumbria’s communities (aka LSOAs) rank amongst the 10% most deprived in England in relation to geographical barriers to services;

  • LSOAs within Crummock (Allerdale), Seascale (Copeland), Lyne (Carlisle) and Skelton (Eden) rank in the top 25 most deprived out of 32,482 LSOAs in England in relation to geographical barriers to services;

  • Cumbria’s average travel times to key services are longer than the national average;

  • Eden had the 2nd longest average travel times to key services out of all Local Authorities (LAs) in England. Eden’s average travel times were longer than similarly sparsely populated LAs;

  • Cumbria has 29 LSOAs that rank within the 10% most overall deprived in England;

  • LSOAs within Moss Bay (Allerdale), Barrow Island (Barrow-in-Furness), Central (Barrow-in-Furness), Hindpool (Barrow-in-Furness), Ormsgill (Barrow-in-Furness) and Sandwith (Copeland) rank within the 3% most overall deprived nationally;

  • Cumbria has a much smaller proportion of residents from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) groups than the national average (3.5% vs. 19.5%);

  • Of Cumbria’s districts, Carlisle had the greatest proportion of residents from BME groups (5%);

  • Seven wards in Cumbria had greater proportions of residents from the White Other ethnic group than the national average: Windermere Bowness South in South Lakeland (9.2%); Windermere Applethwaite and Troutbeck in South Lakeland (9.2%); St Aidans in Carlisle (7.9%); Castle in Carlisle (7.4%); Windermere Town in South Lakeland (7.1%); Kendal Fell in South Lakeland (6.4%); and Ambleside and Grasmere in South Lakeland (5.9%);

  • Between 2001 and 2011, Cumbria experienced a greater proportional increase in numbers of residents from BME groups than the national average;

  • Numbers of residents from BME groups increased considerably across all of Cumbria’s districts during the above time, with the greatest increases seen in Carlisle (+143.4%) and Eden (+104.1%);

  • LSOAs in the wards of Central (Barrow-in-Furness), Hindpool (Barrow-in-Furness), Ormsgill (Barrow-in-Furness), Harbour (Copeland), Barrow Island (Barrow-in-Furness), Moss Bay (Allerdale), Walney North (Barrow-in-Furness) and Sandwith (Copeland) rank in the top 1% most deprived nationally in relation to health and disability;

  • Cumbria’s proportion of residents reporting that their day-to-day activities are limited by a health problem or disability illness is higher than the national average (20.3% vs. 17.9%);

  • Of Cumbria’s districts, Barrow-in-Furness had the greatest proportion of residents with day-to-day activities that were limited (24.6%);

  • Cumbria has a higher proportion of residents providing unpaid care than the national average (11.3% vs. 10.3%);

  • Barrow-in-Furness also had the greatest proportion of residents providing unpaid care amongst Cumbria’s districts (11.9%);

  • When compared to the national average, Cumbria has an older age profile;

  • All of Cumbria’s districts have older age profiles than the national average, with Allerdale, Eden and South Lakeland having the smallest proportions of younger residents and the greatest proportions of older residents;

  • Projections of recent demographic trends suggest that by 2017 Cumbria’s population will decrease by 1,400 persons (-0.3%), with numbers of 0-14 year olds decreasing by 300 persons (-0.4%) and 15-64 year olds decreasing by 13,500 persons (-4.3%), while numbers of residents aged 65+ increase by 12,300 persons (+11.4%);

  • Projections based on economic forecasts suggest that by 2017 Cumbria’s population will increase by 17,100 persons (+3.4%), with numbers of 0-14 year olds increasing by 3,000 persons (+3.9%), 15-64 year olds increasing by 500 persons (+0.2%) and 65+ year olds increasing by 13,600 persons (+12.7%);

  • While projections for Cumbria’s districts vary, all districts are projected to experience an increase in residents aged 65+ to 2017. The greatest increases are projected for Eden (+14% based on recent demographic trends, +16.3% based on economic forecasts);

  • All of the above statistics vary considerably across Cumbria’s wards and LSOAs;

  • It is recommended that commissioners ensure that services are designed with consideration of the profile of Cumbria’s population. Because the profiles of communities within Cumbria vary greatly, district and county averages can mask localised need. It is therefore essential that consideration is given to sub-district level information;

  • It is also recommended that commissioners consider the projected future size and structure of Cumbria’s population, drawing upon jobs led projections produced by the Popgroup software as well as the standard population led projections produced by the Office for National Statistics;

  • While the Popgroup Experian Jobs Led Scenario, provided within the above chapter, incorporates a range of information about the projected number of future jobs in Cumbria, it does not take into account a number of major potential developments in Cumbria which were not confirmed in 2013 (e.g. nuclear new build and other nuclear related projects) or developments outside of Cumbria which may impact on the county’s population (e.g. high speed rail construction). As details of these developments are made available during the course of 2015 it is recommended that further Popgroup scenarios are developed to consider the potential population impacts of these developments.

Evidence and research

Evidence and research information including briefings and other publications supporting the Population theme of the JSNA is available via the links below:

Further information

For further information relating to the Population theme of the JSNA please contact:

Rebecca Fowler 
Senior Data Analyst
Information & Intelligence - Performance and Risk Unit
Cumbria County Council
Tel: 07827 826434