Reading Population 2017

Reading is located in the Thames Valley in Berkshire, England and is designated as the county town. The town has a history dating as far back as the 8th century and was known as one of the area’s most important trading centers. It is believed that the town’s history could date back as far as the 6th century. Estimates in 2016 put the population of the Reading borough at 162,700, while the urban area had a population of 232,662 at the time of the 2001 Census. The population of the borough of Reading was over 155,000 according to the 2011 Census. The city is known for attracting many visitors around the world for its annual music festival and sports events.

Reading Demographics

Reading has a large population of Polish residents, with a community that was established over 30 years ago. Almost three-quarters of the population of Reading is white, as recorded in the 2011 Census. Over 65% of white inhabitants are White British. Over 9% of the population is Asian, while 6.7% are black, 4.5% are Chinese, and 3.9% are mixed race. In Reading, there are over 150 languages spoken throughout its residents.

Reading History

Evidence shows that Reading was inhabited in the 8th century, although its history may date back even further. It is believed that the city was named after the Readingas tribe. In the 1500s, Reading had settled into a role as a trading center and was the largest town in Berkshire. During the same time period, it was also one of the biggest towns in England by wealth. In the 1600s, its population exceeded 5,000 and was a town made rich through trading cloth.

In the 18th century, Reading became famous for brewing and was also known for its iron works industry. In the 19th century, the manufacturing industry within Reading expanded, and railways were constructed. Expansion continued throughout the 20th century and today, Reading has a large shopping center along with modern housing developments that continue to expand the town.

One of the most interesting things about Reading is that it is one of the largest areas in the United Kingdom that does not have city status. Reading has, however, attempted to apply for city status, with the most recent attempt occurring in 2012.

Today, Reading continues to be one of the UK’s most important commercial centers and is home to major shopping centers and is the location of offices and headquarters for companies including PepsiCo, Microsoft, Oracle and ING Direct.

Reading Population Growth

Reading has showed significant population growth since the early 1800s. A slight drop in population occurred between the 1970s and 1990s, but between 2001 and 2011, significant growth was recorded. Significant growth was recorded during the 2011 census among the 0 to 14 age demographic. As Reading continues to be a hub of commercial activity, the population is only expected to continue on a steady path of growth in the years to come.

Reading Population in 2018Source: By Smuconlaw. (Own work.) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Reading Population Data (Urban Area)

Year Population Growth Rate (%) Growth
2030375,0005.34%19,000
2025356,0005.33%18,000
2020338,0002.42%8,000
2017330,0001.54%5,000
2015325,0002.52%8,000
2010317,0002.59%8,000
2005309,0001.64%5,000
2000304,000-5.30%-17,000
1995321,000-0.62%-2,000
1990323,00030.24%75,000
1985248,00024.62%49,000
1980199,000-3.86%-8,000
1975207,000-1.90%-4,000
1970211,0004.98%10,000
1965201,0005.79%11,000
1960190,0008.57%15,000
1955175,0008.02%13,000
1950162,0000.00%0
Reading Population Growth

Reading's 2017 population is now estimated at 330,000. In 1950, the population of Reading was 162,000. Reading has grown by 5,000 in the last year, which represents a 1.54% change. These population estimates and projections come from the latest revision of the UN World Urbanization Prospects. These estimates represent the Urban agglomeration of Reading, which typically includes Reading's population in addition to adjacent suburban areas.

Data Sources
  1. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations