News: South-East is the promised land

Mon, 07 Jan 08

2.5 million people have moved to the South East from elsewhere in the UK since 1996...

New research from Halifax shows that the South East was the most popular region for people to move to between 1996 and 2006 with 2.5 million arrivals from elsewhere in the UK. However, the South East also recorded the second highest number of people leaving to live in another UK region. Overall, the South East experienced a net gain from internal migration of 384,000; the second biggest of the 12 UK regions.

The South West experienced the largest net gain from internal migration during the past decade. Over 440,000 more people have moved to the South West from elsewhere in the UK than have left to live in another region, boosting the region's population by 9%.

Although the population of London is still growing, 2.4 million people have left London to live elsewhere in the UK during the past ten years. As a result, London recorded, by a significant margin, the greatest net loss from internal migration (608,000) of any region.  Northern Ireland was the only other region to experience a net loss.

Internal migration

The decline due to internal migration, however, was more than offset by the arrival of one million people to London from abroad over the past decade. Overall, London's population has risen by 538,000 over the last ten years.  This was the biggest increase of any region. (

The total population in the North East fell by 20,000 over the ten years to 2006. Populations increased in all other regions with the South East (438,000) and South West (331,000) experiencing the biggest increases behind London. (Table 2)

Martin Ellis, Halifax chief economist, said: "The South East and South West have been the most popular destinations for people to move to from elsewhere in the UK over the past decade. In particular, the high level of migration to the South West has contributed to the rapid rise in house prices in the region in the last ten years”.

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