According to the Population Reference Bureau (PRB), a US pressure group, the UK will become the European country with the highest population by about 2050.

Britain will experience a surge in population from its current level of 62.2 million to a huge, some say unsustainable, 77 million. This will then eclipse Germany’s projected 71.5 million and France’s 70 million.

The PRB “ … informs people around the world about population, health, and the environment, and empowers them to use that information to advance the well-being of current and future generations”.

According to Wiki, Germany has a current population of nearly 82 million. But the PRB predict that this will fall 11 million or so over the next four decades due to reducing birth rates and lack of immigration. One in five Germans are now over the age of 65. But both France and the UK will see marked increases in their population levels.

The Telegraph reports that UK mothers are having more children now than at any time since 1973 based on figures from the ONS. And half of the increase was due to immigrant mothers. And the Mail says that a third of the European population growth is now concentrated in the UK.

As the Telegraph points out, the increase in the UK population of 15 million is akin to doubling the number of people in Glasgow, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool over the period.

According to the PRB the European population as whole though should drop from 739 million to 720 million due to reduced birth rates overall. India though will expand hugely to overtake China as the world’s most populous country and help drive the earth’s total population from its current 6.89 billion to 9.49 billion.

One also assumes that the level of wealthy people permanently leaving the UK for such places as Spain will be far lower than in previous times.

If this does begin to unfold along these lines then there will be many heated arguments into the future about space, access to services, homes and integration. But what I would like to know is, where are all those streets paved with gold that seem to attract so many people to the UK?

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