Londoners born outside the UK

Key findings


of Londoners were born outside the UK, compared to 11% in the rest of England.


people moved to London from outside the UK in 2014/15. This was an increase from 170,000 in the previous two years.

In 22

London boroughs, pupils who do not speak English as a first language are more likely to achieve GCSEs than those who do.


Only a limited amount of data about London includes information about people's migration status. However, on this site we do have indicators about international immigration and emigration to/from London, data about rates of worklessness and some information about rough sleepers who are migrants. 

Net migration into London increased to 60,000 in 2014/2015. This is the highest figure since 2010/2011, and reflects international immigration of almost 140,000. (Please note these figures pre-date the EU referendum.) However, the greatest driver of London's population growth remains an increased birth rate and reduce death rate, rather than migration. 

38% of Londoners were not born in the UK, compared to 11% in the Rest of England. The highest proportion of  Londoners born overseas are in Inner West, Outer West and Northwest London.

Education data does not reflect children's migration status but it does record whether children speak English as a first language, which may reflect their parents' migration. 40% (and 51% in Inner London) of London's pupils do not speak English as a first language. It is one of London's successes that pupils who do not speak English as their first language have similar GCSE attainment to those who do. Find out more here.

The likelihood of being in paid work varies hugely by country of birth, often reflecting whether people are economic migrants or seeking sanctuary.  Men born in Romania have the lowest rates of worklessness (4%) compared to 37% of men born in Somalia. For women, those most likely to be in paid work are born in Lithuania; least likely were born in Afghanistan. Find out more here

Rough sleeping in London has doubled since 2010, with a notable rise among Londoners from Central and Eastern Europe - from 300 in 2007 to 2,900 by 2015/16. The figure dropped to 2,300 in 2016/17, the first fall in over a decade. 

 Some very vulnerable migrants - such as asylum-seekers, undocumented migrants or trafficked people - are extremely unlikely to be visible in the figures we cover here. You can find out more about Trust for London's other work on migration issues here

You may also be interested in data about BME Londoners, which will include some migrants. 

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