Lincoln's Population

The upper view is of Lincoln High Street looking north from a point close to the junction with St Mary Street.  It was painted by Augustus Charles Pugin (?1762-1832), a Frenchman who married one of the Welbys of Denton near Grantham and consequently made many visits to the city.  According to the Pugin Society, the date of the painting is most likely 1819, when Pugin also made six drawings of the cathedral.  The only familiar buildings in the view are the Stonebow and the cathedral.  The obelisk on the High Bridge and the church of St Peter-at-Arches were moved in the 1930s.  The painting is in the collection of the Usher Gallery.  (By kind permission of The Collection: Art and Archaeology in Lincolnshire - Usher Gallery, Lincoln, LCNUG:1927/152). www.thecollectionmuseum.com.

In May 2015 (lower view), Lincoln High Street is a busy pedestrian shopping area.  The photograph was taken from a very similar position to Pugin’s vantage point.  The Cathedral towers are just visible behind later buildings and the Stonebow is partly obscured by street furniture.  (Photo: Beryl George)

We considered that there was no readily accessible collation of material about the changing population of Lincoln so we have prepared these webpages to start to improve that. Population changes leave their traces in settlement development patterns and can help to explain the growth and decline of some activities and pressures on space. In addition, an understanding of the methods of census enumerators can be of help to family historians.

We have divided this study into three sections:

Summary of Population Change, in which we have displayed only the total populations of Lincoln, and England with Wales at every census from 1801 to 2011;

19th century, defined as 1801-1901, in which we have tabulated the population by enumeration districts (mostly ancient parishes) at each census; and

20th century, defined as 1901-2011, in which our tabulations are by the city’s polling wards adopted as enumeration districts after 1901. 

For a great deal of help and encouragement we would like to thank David George, John Herridge, Alastair MacIntosh, Lisa Meyer and Dr Rob Wheeler.  Thanks also to Geoff Tann, who has designed the download, whilst also giving us considerable guidance about website presentation.