National Records of Scotland

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Mid-2004 Population Estimates for Localities in Scotland

Mid-2004 Population Estimates for Localities in Scotland

9 November 2006



The 2004 population estimates for localities in Scotland have been published today by the National Records of Scotland (NRS). This is an annual publication, containing a list of localities and their estimated mid-year population.  

The locality estimates follow on from those for settlements, which were published in June 2006. As a result of the work done to produce the locality population estimates, it was found necessary to make some adjustments to the settlement population estimates. The revised Mid-2004 Population Estimates for Settlements in Scotland are also published today on this website. 

A settlement is defined as a contiguous group of high density postcodes with a population of 500 or more. In some cases, settlements may cover large areas of population that include two or more towns or cities. Accordingly, some settlements are divided into 'localities' using as a basis the areas so designated in the 2001 census report Key Statistics for Settlements and Localities Scotland.    


In the years between censuses, NRS maintains data on unit postcodes including a boundary enclosing all of the addresses assigned to that postcode. These postcoded areas are used as 'building bricks' in the definition of settlements and localities.

NRS’s Small Area Population Estimates (SAPE), together with information from the Royal Mail Postcode Address File, was used to classify unit postcodes in 2004 as high density or low density. A postcode was defined as high density if one or more of the following three threshold conditions were met:

  • The number of residential addresses per hectare exceeded 2.1
  • The estimate of population per hectare exceeded 5
  • The number of non-residential addresses per hectare exceeded 0.1

Once the postcodes were defined as high or low density, the population estimates in contiguous high density postcodes were joined together – where the population was 500 or more, the area was defined as a settlement.

The population estimate for each locality has been rounded to the nearest 10. For the small number of localities which crossed local authority boundaries, the population estimate for each part of the settlement was also rounded to the nearest 10. As a result, the overall population figure for these localities may not exactly equal the sum of its constituent parts, and in some cases a population of 0 is reported.

Background notes

NRS breaks down the larger settlements into smaller localities and publishes population estimates for these areas. In most cases, a settlement is exactly equivalent to the locality of the same name. However, where settlements consist of two or more localities, the settlement name is suffixed by the words 'Settlement of'. Mid-2004 population estimates for settlements are available at Mid-2004 Population Estimates for Settlements in Scotland.

It is recommended that users exercise caution when comparing the 2004 settlement and locality population estimates with previous years. Whilst an increase in population may be due to new build, it may also be due to the inclusion of existing housing which had previously been separated by a low density postcode (and vice versa for a population decrease).  

The sum of the locality population estimates will not add up to the 2004 mid-year estimates, as communities with a population of less than 500 are not included in the locality estimates.

In most cases, the localities are equivalent to the settlements of the same name. However, there are 37 settlements that are made up of two or more localities. Glasgow is the largest settlement, consisting of 41 localities.

The estimated population for four localities (Buchlyvie, Forgandenny, Maidens and Upper Largo) has dropped beneath the 500 threshold and they are not reported in the 2004 tables. Cuminestown is included in the tables, the population having reached 500 in 2004.

Invergowrie and Monifieth have been reported separately from Dundee for the first time. As a result, the 2004 population estimate for the locality of Dundee is lower than that for 2003.

List of Tables

Tables 3 and 4 below provide the mid-2004 population estimates for localities in Scotland. Table 3 lists the localities in alphabetical order, along with the council area(s) in which each locality is located and the corresponding settlement. Table 4 lists the localities in descending order of population size.    

The tables below have been made available as Excel and can be viewed in Comma Separated Value (CSV) or Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF).

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Note: On 27 July 2007 the Mid-year population estimates for 2003-2006 were revised for the six Council areas of Aberdeen City, Aberdeenshire, Angus, Dundee City, Moray and Perth & Kinross. However, the statistics on this page were produced using unrevised population estimates. Revised statistics will be placed on this web page once they become available. More details on the Revised Mid-year Population Estimates 2003-2006 are available from this website.

Table 3

Localities in alphabetical order
(Excel    CSV    PDF)

Table 4

Localities in descending order of size
(Excel    CSV    PDF)

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