Census 2021: Results reveal there’s more women than men in Bedford

The area is also ageing

Do you remember taking part in the 2021 census?

Well, the results are in – and they show Bedford’s population has grown significantly over the last decade.

The census takes place every 10 years, with every household in the UK required to take part.


The latest snapshot of England and Wales was captured on March 21, 2021.

Now the first results have been released – and there’s been a large rise in the number of people living in Bedford.

On census day, 185,300 people were living in the area – up 18% from 157,479 in 2011, when the last census was carried out.

This also means the population density has grown to 389 usual residents per square kilometre, up from 331 in 2011.

The Census 2021 website

The census is crucial for the UK’s statisticians to understand how our population is changing – and plays a vital role in how our public services and government operate.

It shows the balance of men and women in the area has changed – Bedford’s population is now 49.2% male and 50.8% female, meaning there is now a slightly higher proportion of men in the area than 10 years ago.

In 2011, people living in Bedford were 49.1% male and 50.9% female.

The census also shows the area is ageing – a decade ago the population was made up of 12.4% under-10s and 15.8% over-65s, but this had changed to 12.4% and 16.8% respectively by 2021.

Across England and Wales, the total population also grew 6.3% over the past decade, from 56,075,912 in 2011 to 59,597,300 last year.

This included an 8.3% increase in the East of England, where the population rose to 6,334,500 from 5,846,965 in 2011.

There were 24.8 million households in England and Wales on census day 2021, up from 23.4 million in 2011, with an average of 2.4 people in each household – the same as in 2011.

Historic populations of Bedford:

1981: 131,275

1991: 133,692

2001: 147,912

2011: 157,479

2021: 185,300

Historic populations of the East of England:

1981: 4,760,072

1991: 5,055,515

2001: 5,388,140

2011: 5,846,965

2021: 6,334,500