The latest results released from the 2016 Census have shown an increase in the number of elderly people living alone in Offaly.
The results issued by the Central Statistics office today show that the number of people living alone in the county increased by 178 to 5,970, representing 7.7% of all those living in private households in the county.
Of these, 2,437 were aged 65 and over, an increase of 329 from the 2,108 people in the same age bracket that were listed as living alone in the 2011 Census. Given the fact of a longer life expectancy, women accounted for 62% of the 2,437 over 65s living alone in the county.
Over 65s accounted for 40% of all those living alone in the county in private households.
There has also been an increase in the number of people aged 85 and over living alone. In 2016, 347 people in this age group were living alone in Offaly, and increase of 72 from the 275 that were in the same living situation in the county in 2011.
Elsewhere, the figures also revealed a number of interesting facets of family life in Offaly. Census 2016 recorded 20,794 families in County Offaly, an increase of 484 (2.4%) on the 2011 figure.
38.2% of those aged 15 and over living in the county were single (22,983 people), which was below the percentage in the State overall (41.1%). A further 29,187 people (48.5%) were (first-time) married, compared to 46.0% nationally.
There were 908 remarried persons in the county. Males were much more likely to remarry after divorce, with 41.8% doing so, compared to just 31.5% of females.
The number of divorcees increased by 255 to 1,595, and accounted for 2.6% of those aged 15 and over. The 3,345 widowed persons comprised 5.6% of those aged above 15 years.
Census 2016 marked the first time that this relationship category was recorded in an Irish census, following the enactment of civil partnership legislation in 2015. There were 37 people in this category in Offaly, and 4,226 in the State overall.
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