Number of Poles living in UK hits record low

The number of Polish citizens living in the United Kingdom fell by 85,000 in the first half of 2020, and is a record low since the UK opened its labour market to EU citizens, according to the UK stats office.

Data from the UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that the number of Polish citizens decreased from 900,000 in 2019 to 815,000 in the first half of 2020. Compared to 2017, the number went down by 206,000 people.

ONS reported that this is the largest decrease since the mass migration of Poles began after Poland joined the European Union and since the UK opened its labour market to all EU citizens in 2004.

From 2014, the number of Poles in Great Britain continued to grow until 2016, and then fell slightly, but at the end of 2017, it reached a record of 1.021 million, according to the ONS estimates.

Since then, a downward trend began, with the biggest drop so far being recorded between the middle of 2018 and the end of 2018, a decrease of 80,000.

Polish citizens remain the largest group of foreigners living in Great Britain. Their number, 815,000 is more than twice as large as the second-placed Romanian community whose number stands at 404,000.