Census shows increase in Donegal population, homes and vacant properties

The Irish population has increased by 8 per cent during the last 5 years.

Preliminary results from the 2011 census - carried out 12 weeks ago - show there are now more than 4-point-58 million people living in Ireland.

The figure represents a rise of over 341-thousand people since the last census in 2006.

The census total is a count of the number of persons actually in the State on census night.

The change in population between two censuses reflects the effect of births and deaths and of movements of persons into and out of the State during the relevant period.

The natural increase between 2006 and 2011 was 222,800 or 5.3 per cent of the 2006

Over the same period Donegal's population increased by 13,663 or 9.3% - the county's population now stands at 161,000

The census also took acount of Housing numbers, they have increased more rapidly than total population between 2006 and 2011, with a 13.3 per cent increase

Donegal is well above the national average in this regard with a 20% plus increase in houses over 5 years.

The 2006 Census provided figures for the first time on vacant dwellings in Ireland and the datashowed that 15.0 per cent of all housing was vacant in April 2006, that figure fell slightly in 2011.

However the rate in Donegal is almost double that with 28.5% of homes classed as vacant at the time of the census in April 2011, the second highest rate in the whole country.