SINePost newsletter - April 2015
In this issue ...
- Council Taxbase
- Child Benefit statistics
- School Population Forecast
- Migrant Workers
- Rural Homeworking
- Older People in Employment
- South West Early Years Dashboard
- Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet
- Indices of Deprivation
- What’s New on the Somerset Intelligence website?
- Forthcoming Statistical Releases
1. Council Taxbase
The number of dwellings on the Council Tax Valuation List in Somerset increased by 2,091 to a total of 246,611 in the year to October 2014, according to the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). Of these dwellings, 3,582 were exempt from Council Tax (due to being owned by a charity, for example). The total number of empty dwellings fell by 180 from the previous year to a total of 5,972.
The number of dwellings classed as second homes also fell marginally, to 3,114. A significant proportion of second homes are in West Somerset (around 6% of dwellings in West Somerset are classed as second homes; compared to around 1% in Somerset’s other districts).
Council Tax B is the most common overall banding in Somerset (27% of dwellings). Nationally, Band A is the most prevalent.
For further details, see: www.gov.uk/government/statistics/council-taxbase-2014-in-england
2. Child Benefit statistics
As at August 2014 there were 105,085 children (aged 0-19) in Somerset for which Child Benefit was being received. An additional 4,880 children were ‘opted out’ due to the High Income Child Benefit Charge (HIBC). Data are published by single year of age and are a useful ‘real-time’ proxy for the child population (however, families choosing not to claim (as a result of HIBC) are excluded, so this will become less reliable over time).
One-child families represent nearly half (46%) of claimant families in Somerset. Two child families represent 39%, three child families 11%, and four child families 3%. There are 585 families in Somerset with five or more children.
3. School Population Forecast
Falls in secondary age pupils are now virtually at an end, and primary age numbers are still on an upward trend, according to the latest (2014) Somerset School Population Forecast. The number of mainstream pupils (aged 4-17) is forecast to increase each year through to 2019 (with no overall forecasts beyond this point).
The 2015 forecast roll of 67,187 pupils is 472 higher than the 2014 total. By the end of the forecast period in 2019 there is a forecast increase of 2,568 - an increase of 3.8%, averaging 514 pupils per year.
Whilst some areas have only minor increases or in some cases a slight decrease forecast, there are still increases in other areas. By 2019 the primary school roll is forecast to increase in Bridgwater (by 598), Taunton (up 437) and Yeovil (up 446).
For further information, and to download the full report, go to: www.somersetintelligence.org.uk/cyp-population.html
4. Migrant Workers
A total of 3,014 overseas nationals registered for a National Insurance Number (NINo) in Somerset during 2014 according to latest figures from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). This represents the highest annual figure since 2007. Around 7 out of 10 registrations were to people from ‘new EU’ (post-2001) countries.
The rise in registrations was driven by significant increases in the numbers of Romanian and Bulgarian nationals coming to Somerset, following the relaxing of employment restrictions in January 2014. During 2014, Polish nationals continued to be the most common nationality (897 registrations), followed by Romanian (686), Portuguese (242) and Bulgarian (197).
More data are available in the International Migration section of our website at www.somersetintelligence.org.uk/migration.html. National data are available through the DWP’s ‘Stat-Xplore’ tool: https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/
5. Rural Homeworking
People are increasingly working from home, particularly in rural areas, according the latest update to Defra’s Statistical Digest of Rural England.
Overall, rural areas have a higher rate of home working than urban areas. Between 2008 and 2013 the proportion of people working from home in rural areas increased from 19% to 22%, while in urban areas it increased from 11% to 12%. The highest rate of home workers is found in rural hamlets and dispersed areas (an estimated 33% of workers in 2013).
According to the Office for National Statistics, home workers are more likely to be working in higher skilled roles and earn on average a higher hourly wage.
6. Older People in Employment
New analysis of Census data by the ONS reveals that, in March 2011, there were almost 13,000 people in Somerset in employment aged 65 or more, 11.6% of the population in that age group.
West Somerset had the second highest figure in England & Wales for those aged 65 and over in employment as a proportion of all employed people (7.5%), beaten only by the Isles of Scilly. Two in five employed people aged 65+ in the county are self-employed, but this rises to more than half in West Somerset, the latter probably linked to the relatively high presence of agriculture and tourism.
7. South West Early Years Dashboard
Public Health England (PHE) has published a dashboard showing the current position and trend for 11 key Early Years health and well-being indicators for each local authority area, with comparisons to the South West and England. See: www.swpho.nhs.uk/resource/item.aspx?RID=110837
According to the dashboard, Somerset performs better than the national average in terms of: under 18s conceptions; low birth weight babies; and vaccination coverage. Somerset is worse than the national benchmark in terms of: smoking in pregnancy (at time of delivery) and hospital admissions for injuries in children.
PHE have also published a guide aimed at commissioners and providers of early years services on the use and interpretation of early years indicators: www.swpho.nhs.uk/resource/item.aspx?RID=110835
8. Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet
The Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) have published a statistical report presenting a range of information on obesity, physical activity and diet, drawn from a variety of sources, including previously unpublished figures on obesity-related hospital admissions.
The figures indicate that in the last three years more than three times as many women as men have been admitted to hospital in Somerset with a primary diagnosis of obesity.
In 2013/14, there were a total of 67 Finished Admission Episodes (FAEs) in NHS hospitals in Somerset with a primary diagnosis of obesity. There were 68 admissions in 2012/13 and 93 in 2011/12. Admission rates in Somerset are consistently below national averages for both males and females.
For further details, see: www.hscic.gov.uk/catalogue/PUB16988
9. Indices of Deprivation
The DCLG has published the Government response to the consultation on the final proposals for updating the English Indices of Deprivation. See: www.gov.uk/government/consultations/updating-the-english-indices-of-deprivation
In summary, there was a high level of support for the proposed changes to indicators for this update of the Indices and the department will implement these changes.
There is a provisional release month of July, and SINePost will inform you of the exact publication date when it is announced.
10. What’s New on the Somerset Intelligence website?
The following pages have been updated in the last month:
11. Forthcoming Statistical Releases
The following are due for release at sub-regional geographies during April:
- Crime in England and Wales: year ending December 2014
- Statistics on NHS Stop Smoking Services in England: Apr to Dec 2014 (NHS)
- Geographic patterns of cancer survival in England: adults followed up to 2013 (ONS)
- Update to the Statistical Digest of Rural England (Defra)
- Universal Credit: Apr 2013 to Apr 2015 (experimental) (DWP)
And finally ...
- If you have any news or articles you’d like to share
- If any of the links in this newsletter don’t work
- If you would like to unsubscribe from the SINePost email alert
Please email TXAtkins@somerset.gov.uk