-The United Kingdom had an estimated population of 62,262,000 people in 2010, and covers an area of 243,610km².
-It is a MEDC and, as it is progressing from stage 4 to 5 in the Demographic Transition Model, is facing the problems of an ageing population.
-Today for the first time in history the number of over 65s in Britain outnumber the number
of under 16s.
Why does Britain have an greying population?:
• During the 20th century the life expectancy for an average Brit has increased by 30 years, meaning that people are living a lot longer. This is due to the impressive improvements in healthcare.
• Over the last 40 years the fertility rate in Britain has fallen, however the birth rate has now risen over the last decade. It is currently 1.9 children per woman, the highest since 1973, but nothing compared to 2.93 in 1964.
•The children from the baby boom in 1946 – 1964, with 17 million births in Britain alone, are now reaching retirement.
What problems/benefits will this have?:
• The number of people of a working, taxing age will shrink, which could result in gaps in the jobs market, with businesses and public services lacking the workforce required, which could cause them to fall in standard.
• Stress is being placed on healthcare and social services.
• Youth amenities are closed to make room for new amenities, such as Gala Bingo centres for the elderly. Horsmonden Village Hall hosts indoor bowls nowadays where before they ran teen discos.
What are the British government going to do about
-By increasing the retirement age, there will be fewer retired, and more workers to keep the economy running. Between 2010 and 2020 it will gradually rise for women from 60 to 65 years. Following this it will rise for both sexes between 2024 and 2046 from 65 to 68 years.
• A possible solution is to increase the number of migrants allowed into Britain to support the economy, however there are many disadvantages to this, so it is a centre of political debate.
• The Chancellor has considered raising National Insurance to pay for the increased NHS spending.
• A reform to the pension system is being considered – should we have more private pensions or state?
• Pro-natalist policies such as that in France are being considered to encourage an increase in birth rates, which should introduce more workers to aid the economy