Belfast Telegraph

280 people in Northern Ireland aged over 100

By Rebecca Black

There are 280 people over the age of 100 living in Northern Ireland - and almost 90% of them are women, figures have revealed.

The Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) said that the oldest section of the population was also growing faster than any other age bracket.

The number of people aged 85 and over has been increasing by 1,000 every year for the past decade.

There are now 35,000 people within this age range, representing 1.9% of the population.

The rate of growth - 37.1% - is almost six times that of people under 85, which currently stands at 6.7%.

While women account for 67.3% of people aged 85 and over, the population increase among males of that age over the past decade has been significantly higher (54.8% and 29.9% respectively).

NISRA said that its estimates suggested there were some 280 centenarians in mid-2015, and only one in nine was a man.

There was also variety in the number of older people across different parts of Northern Ireland.

The Ards and North Down council area has the highest proportion of people aged 85 years and older at 2.4% (3,800 people).

The equivalent figure in the Derry and Strabane council area, meanwhile, is 1.4% (2,100 people).

However, compared to the rest of the UK, Northern Ireland continues to have the lowest proportion of people aged 85 and over (1.9%).

However, over the decade ending mid-2015, the growth in this age group (37.1%), was noticeably higher than in England (31.3%), Scotland (30.7%) or Wales (27.2%).

The growth in the number of people aged 85 and over is the result of more people "ageing into" the bracket than are leaving it each year as a result of dying.

At these ages, the impact of migration is negligible.

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