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Release: Ageing in the UK Datasets, 2011 Pensions Act update, January 2012

Released: 18 January 2012


Angele Storey

Demographic Analysis Unit

Telephone: 01329 444512

Categories: Population, Older People, Ageing

Frequency of release: Ad-hoc

Language: English

Geographical coverage: UK

Geographical breakdown: UK and GB

In this release

These data tables underlie the ‘Ageing in the UK’ interactive mapping tool. Using the tool helps bring these data alive, allowing you to analyse the age structure of the population at the local area level more easily. You can see how the population has aged over time and is projected to continue to age by selecting from a list of indicators of population ageing, such as median age, and animating the map. It is also possible to export jpegs of the maps you produce.

The indicators have been calculated using population estimates 1992 to 2010 and 2008-based population projections for local and unitary authorities in England and Wales, council areas in Scotland and local government district areas in Northern Ireland and also the UK as a whole.

2010 based sub-national population projections (SNPP) for England were published by ONS on 21st March 2012.

Sub-national population projections for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are produced by the devolved administrations. National Records of Scotland (NRS) published 2010 based SNPP for Scotland on the 29th February 2012. However, 2010 based SNPP are not available for Northern Ireland or Wales. It is therefore not possible to update the ‘Ageing in the UK’ mapping tool and tables on a consistent basis at this time.

The  ‘Ageing in the UK’ interactive mapping tool is available through the ONS website. Please note that you may need Flash Player version 10 to use the map and to export and save jpegs of static maps. These can be downloaded and installed free of charge from Adobe Flashplayer.


State Pension Age (SPA): 'The qualifying age for claiming a state pension in the UK'.

The Pensions Bill 2011 received Royal Assent on 3 November 2011. The Act brings forward changes to the State Pension age timetable in Great Britain. From April 2016, women's State Pension age will rise faster than originally planned, equalising with men's at 65 by November 2018. Between December 2018 and October 2020, men and women's State Pension ages will be increased from 65 to 66.

The figures relating to SPA in the 'Ageing in the UK' datasets which underlie the 'Ageing in the UK' mapping tool take account of the changes to SPA under the 2011 Pensions Act. This Act applies to GB only. Pensions in Northern Ireland are a devolved matter. However, an equivalent bill has been proposed by the N.I Assembly.

Under current law State Pension age will already increase to 67 between 2034 and 2036 and 68 between 2044 and 2046.


Median Age: 'Age at which half of the population is older and half younger'.

Sex ratio 65 and over: 'Number of men aged 65 and over per 100 women aged 65 and over'.

Old age support ratio: 'Number of people of working age (16 to SPA) per person of SPA and over'.


Figures are unavailable for Northern Ireland for 2024 - 2033, as subnational population projections stop at 2023.

Because of very low population numbers in certain age categories, data for City of London have been combined with Westminster, and data for the Isle of Scilly with Penwith.

Content from the Office for National Statistics.
© Crown Copyright applies unless otherwise stated.