The UK is oozing with multicultural diversity. Wherever you go in Britain you are guaranteed to find people, foods, and shops from all over the world sharing their food and way of life.
The UK largely celebrates its diversity and cultures too which is what makes it so special. However why is the UK so Multicultural?
- UK Skills Shortages – Immigration built the UK’s diverse population.
- The UK’s an attractive place to live.
- The British Empire – The UK has been multi-cultural for centuries.
- Free movement – The European Union.
The UK’s multiculturalism was borne out of necessity in a lot of ways. For instance, to fill a labor shortage and to attract talent for key jobs. Whatever the reason though, the UK has benefited from its diverse society. Over the years, the UK has become a country that attracts the masses.
Strong Link between Diversity and Prosperity
British towns with the most immigrants and highest levels of diversity tend to do far better economically than areas with little, a recent study commissioned by anti-racism charity Hope Not Hate has found.
An analysis of local authorities in England and Wales shows a strong link “between rising prosperity and rising diversity” – with diverse areas doing better “almost regardless of which metric you use”.
The study is a challenge to negative perceptions of immigration and concludes that “growing diversity is an inevitable part of increasing prosperity – and, potentially, a contributor to it”.
It also makes recommendations about how the government and local councils can manage demographic change alongside economic growth.
Which Cities are the most Multicultural?
The UK is probably one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world, but which cities are the most multicultural?
We are not just talking about statistics here; we are talking about those cities that have really embraced foreign cultures and taken them as part of their identity.
What are the Most Multicultural Cities in the UK?
- London – A Blend of Every Culture Going.
- Edinburgh – The Most Integrated Multicultural City in the UK.
- Manchester – A Beautiful Blend of Irish, African & Asian People.
- Leicester – A City for Asian Food Fans & Festival Junkies.
The study looked at indicators in 285 council areas outside of big cities, including economic growth, house prices, reductions in deprivation, employment, and wages between 2011 and 2019.
It then compared these factors to metrics like the proportion of the population born outside the UK, the proportion whose parents were born outside the UK, the extent to which the population is transient, and the local level of non-white British ethnic heritage.
The areas looked at excluded London boroughs and areas in other larger UK cities; by contrast the selection covered 49 of the 53 so-called “Red Wall” seats won by the Conservatives in the 2019 election.
The results were striking: the 50 places with the highest rises in GDP through the 2010s saw their non-UK born communities grow at more than twice the pace of the 50 authorities with the lowest GDP rises.
Similar results were found on other metrics: the 50 towns with the highest increase in property values saw the number of births to non-UK born mothers increase at three times the pace of the 50 council areas with the smallest property price increases.
Areas where deprivation eased had twice as rapid an increase in non-UK born populations than areas where deprivation intensified.
And in communities with an above-average level of population transience, the median salary rose by £3,379 during the period studied, faster than the £3,307 in those with below-average transience.
On jobs the study found the 50 local authorities with the greatest increase in employment during the 2010s saw an average 2.2 per cent increase in their non-British populations, compared to the 50 with the smallest rises that saw just 0.8 per cent.
The report recommends that the government should acknowledge the relationship between growth and diversity, and that the Home Office should update its immigration rules to “support the process by which communities get more diverse”.
The charity also calls for targeted funding for areas to “ensure that economic growth is accompanied by investment in infrastructure” to accommodate population rises.
“Failure to do so can easily swell into community tensions,” the report warns, citing housing, GP access, community facilities, and school funding as important areas of focus.
The report also calls on politicians to use inclusive language and to stop perpetuating fallacies about immigration, which might get in the way of communities living together.