Irish Traveller and Catholic population in Laois is on the increase

Census figures Number of people in Ireland with 'no religion' increased by 74

In 2011, the 4,994 people with no religion comprised 3.8% of the county's population. It's an increase of 73.6 percent in five years, making it the fastest growing "religion".

The number of Travellers living in Laois has risen while the county has bucked the national trend of decline in Catholicism, according to latest figures from Census 2016. They are the second largest category and make up 10.1% of the population, compared with 6% previously.

According to Census results released today, the number of Irish Travellers residing in Longford has increased by 39.3%, rising from 753 in 2011 to 1,049 in 2016.

The latest detailed Census report also highlights statistics related to Irish Travellers.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the average age of marriage is much lower in Traveller families, with those families likely going on to have much more children than the average household.

They reported that the number of Roman Catholics in the county is down from 106,845 in 2011 to 105,186 previous year. Figures from the council show there has been a year-on-year percentage increase in the number of families now sharing accommodation, as well as those on the roadside.

Those who indicated a "White Irish" ethnic or cultural background amounted for 88/2 percent of the population.

More than 3.7 million Catholics made up just over 78.3% of the population in April 2016, compared to 84.2% in 2011 - a drop of 132,220 people.

Number of Catholics living in Ireland falling, Census data reveals
Fewer Catholics, while 'no religion' up 74% - Census

The next largest grouping - "Any Other White background" accounted for 17,508 persons (9 per cent), an increase of 1,668.

Over one in three of those with African ethnicity (38.6%) were born in Ireland (22,331 persons), along with 31.3% (2,126) of those with other Black backgrounds.

It seems they're, ahem, "Offaly" religious in the Faithful County.

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Nationally the report shows that the number of Irish Travellers stood at 30,987, representing 0.7% of the general population in April 2016.

A further 1,006 (1.2%) stated they were of "Other, including mixed background" while 2,416 (2.9%) did not state their ethnic/cultural background.

The 2,631 Church of Ireland members in the county made up 2% of its total population. Their average age was 37.9 years, making the nearly two years younger on average than the county's population overall. On average, Church of Ireland members in Tipperary were 3.4 years older (40.9 years) than the overall population in the county.

Orthodox (677) and Muslims (573) completed the top five.

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