Floating Population and Vagrants

Next Selection Previous Selection


1. Ships, Barges and Boats.

Of the 32,527,843 persons enumerated in England and Wales at the date of the Census, 47,978 were enumerated on Merchant Ships, Barges and Boats, and 23,998 on His Majesty's Ships in Home Waters, making a total floating population of 71,976 persons.

From the returns collected by Officers of His Majesty's Customs it appears that 6,046 sea-going or coasting merchant vessels were in the Ports of England and Wales on the night of the Census or arrived there on the following day; of these 6,046 vessels, 5,262 were British, while the remaining 784 were either Foreign or Colonial. On board these Merchant vessels were 41,109 persons, nearly 17,000 of whom were Foreign Sailors.

The number of barges or boats engaged in inland navigation, which had been 4,301 in 1891, decreased to 2,649 in 1901; the decline during the decennium in the numbers of the craft exceeded 50 per cent. in the Counties of Lancaster and Chester, and with few exceptions was general throughout the remainder of the Country. On these 2,649 barges or boats 6,869 persons were enumerated, of whom 4,916 were Males and 1,953 were Females, a decrease as compared with 1891 of 3,618 Males and 886 Females.

2. Barns, Sheds and Caravans.

The vagrant population, comprising those enumerated in Caravans, Tents or in the open air, and in Barns and Sheds, numbered 14,219 at the last Census; of these 1,645 were enumerated in Barns and Sheds, a decrease since the previous Census of 1,504 persons, equal to a decline of 48 per cent. in the decennium. These nomads among whom the males outnumbered the females by four to one, were far more numerous in Kent than in any other County, but were also numerous in Surrey, in Sussex, in the West Eicling of Yorkshire, in Essex and in Lancashire; nearly two thirds of the total number being enumerated in these six Counties. Those enumerated in Caravans, in Tents, and in the open air numbered 12,574 at the last Census, being nearly equal in number to those enumerated in 1891; among this group the sex disproportion was not nearly so great, there being 6?858 of the male to 5,716 of the female sex. Persons living in Caravans or Tents were found in considerable numbers in the Counties adjoining the Metropolis, in Hampshire, in Lancashire, in the West Riding of Yorkshire, in Sussex, and in Staffordshire.

Next Selection Previous Selection