London, capital of the United Kingdom, is unquestionably a diverse city. Within the United Kingdom it has the highest proportion of non-UK populations. Worldwide it is the city with the second largest immigrant population in absolute numbers, exceeded only by New York.

The historical trends that have driven this are clear. Increasing industrialisation swelled London's population throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, and at one point it became the most populous city in the world. According to the official census data the population peaked at 8.6 million in 1939 and then declined to 7.2 million by 2001, but it grew by just over a million to reach 8.2 million in 2011. Trade and migration went along with these crude numbers

Data from the UK's Office for National Statistics show that in 2021 about 37% of London residents were not born in the UK; 21% of Londoners were not British nationals. About 70% of children born in London have at least one parent who was born abroad.

Here are some fun facts about London's diversity that you might not have expected:

-- About half a million Londoners were born in India, Pakistan or Bangladesh.

-- Many Londoners were born in other parts of Europe. London has the third largest community of Irish-born people (after Dublin and Cork).

-- About the same number of French-born people live in London as live in Calais, Northern France.

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