Birmingham needs to focus on addressing the barriers to job creation and progression within the city.
In Cities Outlook 2014, we looked at the flow of people to and from London and analysed the economic links between the capital and other UK cities. In a previous blog, Paul Swinney examined the migration patterns in Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool for different age groups and in this follow up blog I will take a more detailed look at Birmingham.
Overall, Birmingham lost 32,000 people to other UK areas between 2009 and 2012. The city lost over 5,800 people to 30 other UK cities, and over 26,000 people to non-city areas. Most of the people who left Birmingham to other UK cities moved to London (4,800), which others also moved to Telford (700), Nottingham (600) and Bristol (350). At the same time, Birmingham gained relatively small numbers of people from other cities, mainly Coventry (460), Leicester (320), and Bradford (314).
When we look at these population movements by age group, some interesting patterns emerge. Overall, Birmingham gains 18-21 year olds from across the country, largely drawn from London (2,360 between 2009-2012) and non-city areas (7,000). But it also loses significant numbers within this age group to other UK cities: 4,000 in total, mainly to other northern urban areas including Nottingham, Sheffield and Stoke.
Within the 22-30 age bracket, Birmingham (like other large UK cities outside London) sees large people flows out of the city to London and non city areas, as graduates leave the city to either return home, or seek employment opportunities elsewhere.
And within the 31-45 age bracket, Birmingham continues to lose people, with almost 10,000 people leaving the city, mainly to non-city areas (9,300). This large outflow to non-city areas might suggest that people within this age group are choosing to move out of the city in order to start a family (although more detailed analysis on how far from Birmingham people are moving would give a clearer picture on this trend).
Overall, Birmingham lost population to other city and non-city areas between 2009 and 2012. However Cities Outlook 2014 and Paul’s blog show that these migration patterns are not unique to Birmingham. Most of the big cities outside London attract a large number of 18-21 year olds who most likely arrive as students. However, this trend is then largely reversed when people start their careers (they usually move to London) or form a family (they move back to non-city areas).
So, like other big cities outside London, Birmingham needs to focus on addressing the barriers to job creation and progression within the city, so as to offer graduates the kind of opportunities they can find in London and elsewhere.
Leave a comment
Be the first to add a comment.