THE population of Inverclyde decreased by nearly four per cent over 11 years according to census results.
The number of people in the area is estimated to be 78,400 in the 2022 census, which is a decrease of 3,100 (3.8 per cent) from the last one in 2011.
However, the census figure is an increase of 1,900 (2.5 per cent) on the latest mid-year estimate which is put together using previous census results, birth and death data and migration figures.
Census day took place on 20 March 2022 and is a snapshot of Scotland’s population. Data is used by local authorities to inform planning on health services, education and transport.
Inverclyde is one of 10 local authorities across Scotland which had a population decrease. However, the number of households in the area, classed as one person living alone or a group of people living at the same address who share cooking facilities and a living room, stayed the same at 37,400.
There are more women (40,700) than men (39,000) in the area.
The figures show the population of Inverclyde is aging, a trend which is reflected in the Scotland-wide data.
In Inverclyde the percentage of young people aged from zero to 14 years is down 1.3 per cent and three per cent in the 15 to 64-year-old age group.
The percentage aged 65-plus has increased by 4.3 per cent in the past 10 years, from 18.1 per cent to 22.4 per cent.
Inverclyde Council leader Councillor Stephen McCabe said: “These results are not unexpected.
“Our population has been in decline for many years largely due to natural factors as the number of deaths each year outstrip the number of births.
“Many other areas of Scotland are similarly affected and the longer-term projection for Scotland shows a similar picture.
“Trying to arrest our population decline continues to be a priority for the council and our partners.
“We are working hard to make Inverclyde an attractive place to live for existing and potential residents.
“We have fantastic schools, good transport links and a wonderful natural environment.
“The quality of our housing stock has improved greatly over the last 20 years, but we have more to do so we can offer people the type and quality of housing they are looking for.
“We have welcomed many New Scots to our area in recent years and we are hopeful that some of them will want to make Inverclyde their long-term home.
“We are continuing to develop and implement regeneration plans, such as our three City Deal Projects at Ocean Terminal, Inchgreen and Inverkip, and our Levelling Up project for Greenock Town Centre, to make Inverclyde an attractive place to do business, helping to create and sustain jobs.
“We can’t reverse the population decline on our own however, which is why we have recently sought further support from the Scottish Government for the proposals drawn up by the Inverclyde Taskforce.”