MORE than 15% of Clare’s population are now foreign-born, census statistics show, while more than a quarter of households in the Banner County consist of a single person.
Figures show the county had a population of 118,817 on census day and a usually resident population of 116,460. Of the second figure, 98,420 were born in Ireland and 18,040 abroad. This equates to 84.5% born here and 15.5% outside of the country.
Apart from those born in Ireland, the next biggest group are people born in the UK, of which there are 7,616 in Clare. There is also a large Polish population (2,684), with 333 people from Lithuania. Another 2,424 come from other EU countries and a further 4,983 people are from non-EU countries.
The vast majority of Clare’s population are white, with 99,244 people identified as white Irish, 905 as white Irish Traveller and another 9,432 as other white.
A total of 1,653 were identified as Asian or Asian-Irish and 1,132 as black or black-Irish.
For whatever reasons, Clare now has relatively few people in their twenties, with 11,383, compared to 16,330 in their 30s, 17,858 in their 40s and 15,470 in their 50s.
Catholicism is still the largest religion in the county. The census shows 98,363 identify as Catholic, with 7,758 as other religions, while just over 10,000 had no religion.
There was a relatively even split in the number of people said to be able to speak Irish and unable to do so, with 52,482 able and 58,889 not. A total of 12,119 are said to speak foreign languages. Of these, Polish is the most prominent with 3,218 speakers, with French second on 1,536. Of the 12,119, 10,128 can speak English either very well or well.
According to the census figures, there are 43,469 private households in County Clare, with 11,108 of them consisting of just one person. Just over three-quarters of households had access to the internet.
There are also 14,053 married couples with children and 1,738 cohabiting couples with children. The county has 1,491 couples living together without children and 7,215 married couples who live together but not with children.
The county has 676 instances of single parent families headed by a father and 3,625 headed by a mother.
Households consisting of two people were most common, with 12,406 of them in Clare, with single person households next at 11,108.
Apartment living has still to catch on in the county to a very large extent, as 110,735 were resident in traditional houses/bungalows, with just 4,400 in flats/apartments.
The building boom is reflected in the figures, with almost half of the county (56,369 people) living in accommodation that was built between 1990 and 2010.
It is far less common for people to rent a home in Clare rather than live in an owner-occupied property.
According to the census, 47,192 lived in properties that were owner-occupied with a mortgage and another 41,038 in ones that were owner-occupied without a mortgage. In contrast, just 24,406 people were in rented accommodation.
Clare had 49,511 people at work, and 7,018 out of work. There were 10,423 students, 7,409 looking after home/family and 14,986 retired people.
By Owen Ryan