Inhabited Islands analytical report

NRS has today published a report that presents findings from the analysis of Scotland's Census 2011 on the characteristics of Scotland's island population.This report presents key results relating to Scotland’s inhabited islands, based on the results of the 2011 Census.

On Census Day, 27 March 2011, there were 93 inhabited islands in Scotland, including those joined to the mainland by causeways or bridges. This report provides further details from the 2011 Census on the demographic, housing, health, identity and language, qualifications, labour market and transport characteristics of island residents. It compares these with Scotland as a whole, and where possible also with data from the 2001 Census.

The Key findings from this report include:

  • There were 93 inhabited islands in Scotland at the time of the 2011 Census. Their total population was 103,700, which was 2 per cent of the population of Scotland.
  •  In 2011, half (50 per cent) of all island residents aged 16 and over were married. While this was slightly lower than the 2001 figure of 52 per cent, it was higher than the 45 per cent reported for Scotland as a whole.
  • In 2011, just over a fifth (23 per cent) of island residents aged 3 and over had some knowledge of Gaelic, a decrease from the 26 per cent recorded in 2001.
  • The proportion of island residents aged 16 to 74 who were in employment increased from 63 per cent in 2001 to 67 per cent in 2011.

The figures released today were produced by independent statistical staff free from any political interference, in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. 

The Inhabited islands analytical report can be viewed and downloaded here (PDF 1.55MB) Further information on this and other analytical reports can be found on the Analytical Reports page.