15% Growth of Jews in Greater Manchester

The Census and the Future of the Manchester Jewish Community by Janis Stout.

Results of the 2011 census are slowly being released.

Why is this important for the Manchester Jewish Community ? This may be the last census funded by the government on a national scale.

In order to plan for the future needs of the community we need to understand the demography of the community:  How many people  there are in the community and what the trends shown by the census can tell us about eg the structure of the population in terms of age ,where people are living.

However the census is not the only source of data about the future demography of the Greater Manchester Jewish community .Interlink are  undertaking a sampling socio-economic survey of the Orthodox community in Salford which will look in more depth at poverty including benefits and housing, health and social care. Jewish Special Educational Needs Services ( JSENSE) a new charity, have been working with Interlink and JewishAutistic and Deficit Support (JADDS), researching the numbers of Jewish schoolchildren in Greater Manchester and those with special educational needs. The Institute for Jewish Policy Research is undertaking a National Jewish Community survey and initial findings will be published at the end of this year .

It is hoped that a speaker from the Jewish Policy Research Centre will visit Manchester in the autumn to share progress on their analysis of the 2011 census .

The first figures published are as follows

Table 1 .Jewish Population of Greater Manchester Census 2011






















The Institute for Jewish Policy Research (JPR) initial review of the 2011 Census presents some clear observations

“National overview

The 2011 census enumerated 263,346 Jews in England and Wales. This represents a slight increase of 3,419 over the ten years since the 2001 census; in percentage terms this is an increase of 1.3%. This means that around 1 in 200 people in England and Wales identified as Jewish.

Assuming that Jews are as likely or unlikely to choose not to respond to the voluntary religion question as the general population (which JPR surveys suggest is the case), then we infer that there are an additional 21,000 Jewish people in England and Wales and therefore the adjusted Jewish population total for England and Wales for 2011 is 284,000. Applying this same logic to the 2001 census data means the percentage increase is 0.8%.[1]

In summary, the population has remained static over the ten year period. However this belies a far more complex picture due to high birth rates among the Orthodox (especially the charedim), but also low birth rates and ageing in the rest of the population, as well as a degree of assimilation”

“Greater Manchester …experienced ……growth, from 21,732 to 25,013; an increase of 15.1%. Within Greater Manchester, Salford and Bury both saw significant increases (by 2,508 and 1,378 Jews respectively). Conversely, the city of Manchester itself lost 463 Jews, and Stockport lost 314.”

Bury is the 5th most Jewish location in England and Wales with a Jewish population of 10,302 a 15.4% increase from 8942 in 2001. Salford is the 7th most Jewish location in England and Wales with a Jewish population of 7,687 a 48.4% increase from 5179 in 2001.

There is more detailed data published from the Census such as breakdowns by age and gender that will enable further analysis of the demographic distribution in Greater Manchester. Other areas that could merit examination are migration, household size, employment, economic data .

It is important that all reliable data is brought together to provide a clearer picture of what  services  will need to be provided across the spectrum of the community . Community organisations should engage in discussion. Questions that need to be considered by the community ?

  • How can we best analyse and bring together all the different pieces of work on the demography of the Greater Manchester Jewish community and avoid duplication of effort?
  • Are we aware of all studies that are available/ being undertaken?
  • Quantitative data needs to be quality assured, not just anecdotal, and  interpreted objectively
  • How can the available data be used to enable planning for the future and in particular to support funding bids by community organisations?

Janis Stout


[1]The adjusted figure is 283,778 based on a non-response level of 7.20% (i.e. 263,346/(1-0.072)). Similarly, for 2001 data, the adjusted figure is 281,642 based on a non-response level of 7.71% (i.e. 259,927/(1-0.0771)).