This is who we are: a profile of our area

What do we know about ourselves? How do we compare with the rest of London, and with the rest of England? Are we getting older or younger? (The answer is both!) The Forum has built a profile of our area, so that we can base our policies on sound facts. 

In the Forum area, there are:

12,372 residents, of whom 52% are female and 48% male

The total went up by 3.8% in the 10 years to 2011.

5,513 households

The number went down by 2.9% in the 10 years to 2011.

The number of children is rising, and so is the number of over 60s

2,150 residents are under 16, or 17% of the total, up from 14% in 2001.

2,756 residents are over 60, or 22% of the total, compared with 19% previously.

Among them, the number aged over 75 rose 23% to 1,010 between 2001 and 2011.

Only 15% of area residents are aged from 16-29, down from 21% in 2001.

The area’s population is mostly British, but quite diverse

British passports are held by 69% of area residents.

61% of residents were born in the UK, compared with 86% of the residents of England. 13% of residents were born in other EU countries, while 6% were born in the United States, 2.4% in Australia and 1.9% in South Africa.

In 9% of households, there is no-one whose main language is English.

The area’s people are highly educated

65% of people over 16 have a degree or similar professional qualification. In London, the figure is 38%, and in England 27%.

More than 3,000 children go to school in the Forum area. Most do not live in the area. The area contains 11 schools – but does not include several large local schools such as UCS Senior, South Hampstead, St Mary’s, Lyndhurst House and the Hall (all of which are outside the Forum area). There are 1,325 residents aged between 5 and 15 living in the forum area.

The number of houses is rising, and the number of flats is falling

There are 1,902 houses (including bungalows). The number went up by 11% in the 10 years to 2011.

In the same period, the number of flats (including maisonettes) fell by 5% to 3,992.

68% of household spaces in the area are flats, and 32% are houses, compared with 71% and 29% in 2001. In Camden as a whole, the latest figures are 85% and 15%. In London as a whole, just over half of residences are flats.

Facts about our households

51% of households consist of one family, and 37% of households are one person living alone. One-third of those living alone are over 65. The number of lone-parent households with dependent children is less than half the national average.

54% of households own their premises, mostly without mortgages. This is well above 33% in Camden, but below the national figure of 63%. 34% of households rent from private landlords, similar to 32% in Camden but well above the national average of 17%. Renting from the council (or other ‘social’ body) accounts for 10% of area households, below the Camden figure of 33% and the national figure of 18%.

71% of people aged 16-74 are employed, and 56% are employed for more than 30 hours a week. Just 261 people, or 2.8%, were categorised in 2011 as ‘unemployed’.

About 14% of residents who are in employment work mainly at home, well above the 5% average in both London and England.

41% of area households have no car, up from 39% in 2001. In Camden, the figure is 61%, and in England 26%.

43% of area households have one car, almost the same as the national average of 42%. 16% of area households have more than one car.

88% of residents say they are in good health. Women in Hampstead can expect to live to 86, and men to 81. About 50 residents die each year, of whom 40% are under 75. Cancer is the main cause of death. About 1,200 people in Hampstead are smokers.  

As a retail centre, Hampstead is flourishing

According to a Camden study published in November 2013, ‘Hampstead is performing very strongly.’ In the town centre area (stretching from Heath Street, along the High Street to Rosslyn Hill), there is a good mix of independent and multiple retail units. In 2012, the majority were independent, while 73 out of 196 (39%) were outlets of multiple chains. Camden said: ‘The number of independent retailers adds to the vibrancy, diversity and uniqueness of the centre and is a key strength.’

One area where the centre is felt by the Camden study to be lacking is ‘convenience goods’ including food, with only one small supermarket, Tesco Express. Many people do their main food shopping elsewhere. The 8.4% of retail floorspace taken up by convenience goods is well below the national average of 14.5%. A second area of shortfall is bars and pubs, though there are many cafes and restaurants.

Of the 196 retail units in Hampstead centre, 45% sell ‘comparison goods’ – non-perishable goods such as clothes, accessories and homewares. This is well above the national average. Services, such as hairdressers, opticians, estate agents and banks, account for 44%, just below the national average. Vacancy rates are very low and there is high demand from retailers.

Nearly half of retail customers live outside the area, according to a Camden survey in 2013. Many of them come by car, and parking is an issue for them, the survey showed.


2011 Census Key Statistics and Quick Statistics, Office for National Statistics. 2001 Census: Key Statistics Summary. We are grateful to Camden for compiling data that match, as closely as possible, the precise boundaries of the Forum area.

Health & Wellbeing: Hampstead Town. Camden and Islington public health intelligence team November 2013

Camden Retail and Town Centre Study, November 2013, written for Camden by GVA Grimley Ltd, and quoting Experian Goad Category Report (July 2012)

Forum research




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