WHETHER you've lived in the town all your life, or are new to the area, many of us will be surprised at the thought that there's much we don't know about Basingstoke.

However, a look at census information (2011) published by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council unveils some interesting facts about the town, and its residents.

Here's a selection of some of the most interesting nuggets of information:

1) Population boom

In 2011, Basingstoke's population was 167,800. This was an increase of more than 15,000 in less than a decade. 

This was an increase of around 10 per cent, compared with 7.9 per cent for the South East and 7.8 per cent for England and Wales. 

In addition to the usually resident population, there were 2,845 schoolchildren and students that lived outside the borough during term-time.

2) Losing faith

In 2011, the majority of residents were Christian (59.9per cent).

However, figure had decline by a significant 19.1 per cent in ten years.

Furthermore, 29.7 per cent of Basingstoke residents stated that they had no religion - a jump of 74.4 per cent on 2011.

3) Top jobs

Almost half of the working population of Basingstoke in 2011 were accounted for by just five employment types.

These most-popular jobs were: Administrative occupations (9.3 per cent); Elementary administration & service occupations (8.6 oer cent); Corporate managers & directors (8.6 per cent); Business & public service associate professionals (8.5 per cent); and Science research, engineering & technology professionals (8.3 per cent).

In total, these occupations made up 43.4 per cent of all working people, and reflects a jump by 57.7 per cent of Basingstoke residents in 'professional occupations' comapred to in 2001. 

4) Plenty space

In 2011, the majority of households (56.8 per cent) in the borough had at least two more rooms than they needed.

However, the number of peopel with mortgages on their homes were on the decline (by 18.8 per cent on 2011). 

Outright ownership had increased by 16.3 per cent, while renting grew by a massive 70.7 per cent, and part-ownership by 152.4 per cent (an extra 620 houses).

5) More jobs now 

While it cannot be denied that the coronavirus pandemic has been destructive in many ways, with job losses being a major factor, it is interesting to note that unemployment in Basingstoke actually peaked in March 2010. 

While there has been a marked rise in unemployment again since 2017, the rates of a decade are far above even last year's figures.

Click here more interesting facts and stats about the town.