More than one in ten Harborough-area babies are born to non-UK mums

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More than one in ten babies born last year in Harborough have mothers born outside the UK, according to the Office of National Statistics.

Figures show that last year, 92 of the 804 births in the district were born to non-UK-born mothers, or 11.4 per cent.

More than half of these, about 55 per cent, were born to mums from EU member countries.

Of the remainder, most were born in the Middle East and Asia.

The ONS report said that the figures for non-UK born mothers includes those who moved to the UK as children and have lived there most of their lives, as well as those who have recently migrated.

The figures for UK-born mothers include children of second or third generation immigrants.

The Harborough figures were well below the average for England and Wales, as 28.4 per cent of children were born to non-UK mums nationwide.

The Annual Population Survey by the Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford found that there is a higher proportion of migrants among people of childbearing age. In 2017, 28 per cent of 30 to 39-year-olds were not born in the UK - compared with 14 per cent of the population overall.

Migration Observatory director Madeleine Sumpton said that this partly explains why the national numbers are high.

She said: “People migrate at all ages, but in general it’s harder for families to migrate.

“People in their 20s and early 30s generally have fewer attachments, and it’s more worthwhile for them to move.”

The Migration Observatory also reported that 62 per cent of foreign-born residents have been in the country for more than 10 years, and that a third arrived in the UK when they were under 18.

Ms Sumpton said: “Migrants who arrived in the country as children are relatively settled, and in many cases they will be socioeconomically indistinguishable from the UK-born.”

The highest percentage of births to non-UK born mothers in England and Wales was in Brent, where 75.7 per cent of mothers were born outside the UK.

The lowest percentage was in Redcar and Cleveland and South Staffordshire, where 3.7 per cent of mothers were born outside the UK.

In the five years from 2012 to 2017, the total number of births in Harborough fell slightly - from 826 births in 2012 to 804 last year.

During the same period, the number of births born to non-UK-born mothers skyrocketed, from 60 births in 2012 to 92 last year.