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Population

For much of the 19th and 20th centuries the village population has varied between approximately 1100-1300 men, women and children. The most dramatic period of growth occurred between 1801 and 1821, twenty years in which the number of inhabitants rose from 698 to 1095, an increase of almost 60%. This growth continued more steadily to peak at 1286 thirty years later. By 1901 the population had declined to 1050. It seems likely that this decrease at the turn of the century is attributable, at least in part, to several Woodchurch families taking the opportunity to emigrate, particularly to Canada, encouraged by the availability of low-cost, financially assisted passages. From 1901 the population slowly recovered and in 1981 stood at 1666. The 1930s and 1960s housing developments such as Brattle Estate, Mill View and Kirkwood together with the comparatively more recent Rectory Close, Cherry Orchard and Bridge Close have contributed significantly to Woodchurch's later post-war growth.

Woodchurch Population 1801-1981

This chart has been compiled from a number of different secondary sources. The data for 1801-1921 were taken from the Victoria County History of Kent (1926), for 1931 and 1951 from the Woodchurch Village Study (1975), and for 1961 onwards from Village Appraisal: Woodchurch Past, Present, Future (1989). All of these are official census figures. Note that a census was not taken in 1941, the population of 1176 is the average of the data for 1931 and 1951. My thanks to Josie Mackie for the post-1921 figures.


Copyright ©2011 Gary Samson and the Woodchurch Ancestry Group