National Records of Scotland

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Centenarians increase by 13% over the last year

Centenarians increase by 13% over the last year

Thursday, 23 Sep 2021
Demography News Release Image

There were 960 centenarians (people aged 100 and over) in Scotland in 2020, according to figures published today by National Records of Scotland. This is a 13% increase on the previous year. 

There were four times more women than men aged 100 and over - 770 women compared to 190 men, reflecting the longer life expectancy of women. 

Two thirds of the estimated 43,750 people aged 90 and over are women. 

Esther Roughsedge, Head of Population and Migration Statistics, said:

“The number of people in the oldest age groups has been steadily increasing. 

The latest figures show that as at June 2020 there were 960 people aged 100 and over in Scotland. 

This is the highest ever figure, and is 110 higher than the previous year’s figure. 
The rise is linked to the increase in the number of births that followed the end of World War One.”

Background Notes:

There is no register of centenarians, so the figures are estimates based on population information rolled forward from the 2011 Census. Therefore we do not know who the oldest person in Scotland is.

The estimates relate to the population as at 30 June (mid-year estimates). 

NRS uses ‘age at death’ data to build up a profile of the number of people aged 90 and over in Scotland. For example, if someone died in 2019 aged 105, it would mean that he/she was alive and aged 104 in 2018 and 103 in 2017 etc. By collating ‘age at death’ data, the estimates for earlier years become more accurate as more death records are available to inform these age profiles. Further information on the methodology used to estimate the number of very old (90+) including centenarians is available on the NRS website.

The full report, “Centenarians in Scotland 2010 to 2020”, is available in the Centenarians section of the National Records of Scotland (NRS) website.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07775 027 380 
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]