Census snapshot

WELLINGTON Shire’s population increased by more than 1200 during the past five years.

According to the data released last week from the 2011 Census, Wellington Shire has a population of 41,335, an increase from 40,080 recorded from the 2006 Census.

Wellington’s population slipped behind Baw Baw, which increased by more than 5000 to 42,864. Latrobe’s population is 72,396 and East Gippsland 42,196.

The major centres in Wellington had population growth, with Sale recording 13,186, Maffra 5112, Stratford 2615, Yarram 2168 and Heyfield 1937.

Stratford’s population grew by almost 1200 people over five years.

Wellington is the only municipality in Gippsland where males (50.2 per cent) outnumber females.

Females make up 50.6 and 50.8 of the national and state population respectively.

A factor behind this is the number of men in the RAAF and employed through the Esso-BHP Billiton Longford plants and contractors.

Median total personal income is $479 a week, while the median weekly household income is $906.

The median monthly mortgage repayment is $1213, with the median weekly rent $170.

In 2006, the median household income was $773 a week, the monthly mortgage was $867 and weekly rent $125.

Almost 40 per cent of people in Wellington own their dwelling outright, 33.9 per cent have a mortgage, while 22.9 are renting.

The household income is lower in Wellington and East Gippsland shires than Latrobe, yet the monthly mortgage is higher.

EIGHTY-four per cent of people in Wellington were born in Australia, compared to 68.6 of Victoria’s population and 69.8 per cent nationally. Three per cent of Wellington residents were born in England and 1.2 per cent in New Zealand.

The number of people who have both parents born in Australia (76 per cent) is well above the national and state rates of about 50 per cent, while just over 10 per cent have either born overseas.

A total 807 people in Wellington identified themselves as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.

THE median age of Wellington residents increased from 40 in 2006 to 41 in 2011. The median age in Sale and Maffra was lower, but Yarram was considerable higher at 48.

The percentage of people about 50 years old is higher than the state and national rates, while the local rate of people aged between 20 and 50 is significantly lower.

The number of people aged up to 14 years, now 19 per cent, was lower than in 2006, while the number of those aged over 65 had increased to 16.8 per cent.

The median age is higher in East Gippsland (45) and South Gippsland (43), while Baw Baw had the only decrease among Gippsland municipalities, from 40 to 39, level with Latrobe.

OF people aged over 15, 50.9 per cent (17,036) were married, above the national rate, with 12.1 per cent (4061) either divorced or separated.

In 2006, 52.9 per cent were married.

The average number of children per family is 1.9.

About a quarter the shire’s population said they were of “no religion”, the most common response to the religion question, followed by Anglican (22.8 per cent) and Catholic (22.1).

In 2006, “no religion” was the third most popular response.

Victorian Census director Sam Thomas the data would help shape the future of state during the next five years.

He said the information would help with the planning of hospitals and health services, schools and public transport.

Mr Thomas said a wealth of data was available freely online, which could be used for a variety of purposes, and provided a great snapshot of local communities and states.

“The ABS has introduced a range of new, easy-to-use tools, including QuickStats, to make searching Census data fast and simple,” he added.

Data from the 2011 Census of Population and Housing is available at www.abs.gov.au/census