Somerset: Facts & Figures
Somerset: Facts and Figures tells the story of Somerset by means of some key facts and figures about our county. These are drawn from a variety of national, regional and local data sources and together provide a taster of the more comprehensive range of intelligence can be found elsewhere on the Somerset Intelligence website.
This digest of statistics, current at October 2016, is grouped in themes as follows:-
- People and Neighbourhoods
- Crime and Community Safety
- Health and Wellbeing
- Environment and Transport
- Economy and Jobs
- Education, Skills and Learning
© Crown Copyright. All right reserved. 100038382 Somerset County Council (2016)
People and Neighbourhoods
- An estimated 545,390 people live in Somerset (June 2015)
- The population is rising by more than 3,000 a year
- 48% of the population live in a Rural area (England: 18%)
- 18% of the current population are children (0 to 15 years),
- More than 1 in 5 of the residents of the county are over the age of 65
- West Somerset has the highest % of people aged 65+ in the UK (33%)
- There were 5,624 live births in Somerset in 2015.
- 6% of Somerset residents (31,761) were born outside the UK (2011)
- Apart from the UK, the most common country of birth was Poland.
- Between 2012 and 2015, more than 11,000 migrant workers applied for a National Insurance number.
- In the year to June 2015, 3,304 more people moved to Somerset from elsewhere in the UK than left the county. However, amongst those of university-age (18-20), there was a net flow out of Somerset of 2,181.
- 560 Traveller caravans were counted in Somerset in January 2016.
- 27% of Somerset people claimed no religious affiliation in 2011.
- The county comprises:-
- 5 Districts (Mendip, Sedgemoor, South Somerset, Taunton Deane and West Somerset)
- 54 County Electoral Divisions
- 138 District electoral wards
- 330 Parishes (excluding Taunton, which is ‘unparished’) and 276 parish or town councils
- Somerset covers 3,452 square kilometres (1,333 square miles)
- 395,000 people are eligible to vote in local government elections
- Approximately 150,000 residents volunteer at least once a month
- 39,000 Somerset people live in one of the 20% most deprived areas in England, but 73,000 live in one of England’s 20% least deprived areas.
Crime and Community Safety
- Avon & Somerset Constabulary has 12 Police stations in Somerset
- 118,000 calls a year to stations in Somerset
- Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue (DSFRS) has 24 Fire stations (3 whole-time and on-call, 21 on-call only) in Somerset
- In Somerset in 2015/16, there were:-
- 7,118 emergency incidents reported to DSFRS
- 292 dwelling fires
- 2,230 Home safety visits and 132 schools talks made by DSFRS
- The number of reported casualties on Somerset’s roads in 2015 was 1,455. This represents a 27% decrease since 2009.
Health and Wellbeing
- Somerset has:-
- 1 Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)
- 74 GP practices
- 2 NHS Hospital Trusts (Musgrove Park, Taunton and Yeovil)
- 12 NHS community hospitals
- 103 pharmacies
- 75 NHS opticians
- 81 NHS dentists
- 68 Nursing/Care homes
- Life expectancy in Somerset is 80.6 for males and 84.3 for females.
- Cancers and circulatory diseases are the main causes of death in Somerset (56% of the total).
- There were 4,207 Somerset patients on GP registers in 2014/15 diagnosed with a mental health condition.
- In 2011, 58,382 people in Somerset indicated that they provided unpaid care, of which 12,313 did so for at least 50 hours per week.
- 81% of Somerset people say their health is good or very good.
- About 16% of the adult population of Somerset currently smokes.
- 66.1% of adult Somerset residents, 23.2% of Somerset reception children and 31.4% of children in year 6 are overweight or obese.
- 15% of Somerset children under 16 are in poverty (2014).
- 490 looked after children (at 31 March 2015)
- 14,234 adults received a package of care in 2015/16
- 82% of clients with a Learning Disability are able to live in their own home or with family members.
Environment and Transport
- Around 15% of Somerset is either at or just above sea-level.
- The highest point is Dunkery Beacon, at 520m above sea level
- Somerset contains:-
- 1 National Park (Exmoor),
- 4 Areas of Outstanding National Beauty: the Quantock Hills, Mendip Hills, Blackdown Hills, and part of Cranborne Chase);
- 127 Sites of Special Scientific Interest
- 2.87 million passengers a year use the ten railway stations (2014/15). Usage has risen 55 % in the past ten years.
- 9.7 million bus passengers a year (2015/16), the highest for six years.
- 1,083 licensed taxis and private hire vehicles (up 64% in ten years).
- Somerset has 4,206 miles (6,770km) of roads (2015)
- Somerset collects 260,000 tonnes of waste a year (2014/15)
- 52% of Somerset County Council’s household waste is sent for reuse, recycling or composting (2015).
Economy and Jobs
- Somerset’s economy is worth £9.586 billion (2014)
- The Gross Value Added (GVA) per full-time equivalent job (FTE) is £42,787, substantially lower (18%) than the UK level.
- The county has 33,356 businesses (MINT UK, June 2016)
- 76% of Somerset’s businesses have fewer than 5 employees
- 78% of people aged 16-64 are employed (Dec 2015)
- Median gross annual pay for Somerset is £20,636 (England: £23,350).
- Wholesale and retail is the largest sector in Somerset, contributing £1.17bn in GVA (12.2%) to the economy in 2014
- Somerset has a high concentration of employment in the aerospace and food and drink sectors compared with the national level.
- 4,480 MoD personnel work in Somerset (1st April 2016)
- There were a record 5,240 apprenticeship starts in Somerset (2015/16)
Education, Skills and Learning
- 265 state-funded schools (including 54 Academies), 5 FE colleges, 1 Free school and 36 Independent schools
- 68,045 pupils attend state-funded schools and 8,557 attend Independent schools (2015)
- 58% achieved 5+ GCSEs A*-C (including English and Maths) in 2015
- 91% of students achieving two or more A level passes .
- 25.6% of Somerset residents aged 16 or over have a Level 4 (degree or equivalent) qualification.
- 37% of Somerset pupils go into Higher Education (2013/13)
- 9,836 pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN), 14% of all pupils
- 91% of schools in Somerset were judged by Ofsted to be good or better in their most recent overall effectiveness judgement (April 2016).
- 36 Libraries (+ 2 mobile libraries)
- There are about 236,500 households (June 2015)
- 34,000 people claim Housing Benefit (Feb 2016)
- Median house prices vary from £380,000 in the Wedmore area to £126,000 in parts of Bridgwater (England average: £215,000)
- Lower quartile house prices in West Somerset are 10 times the lower quartile earnings (England: 7 times)
- The number of long-term vacant dwellings fell 27% since 2010.
- 3,087 dwellings are second homes. In West Somerset, 5.7% of all dwellings are second homes, the tenth highest of any LA in England
- 368 households are accepted as being homeless and in priority need.
- 18,991 people in 8,479 households were on the Homefinder Somerset Social Housing register at 31st March 2016.