1 Feb 2013

Polish language on rise in England and Wales

5:43 am on 1 February 2013

Polish is the most commonly spoken language, outside of English, in England and Wales.

The Office of National Statistics said more than 500,000 people consider it their main language. Polish speakers are concentrated in London. The figures are from a Census in 2011.

The BBC reports it is a reflection of a wave of eastern European migrants who moved to Britain after the enlargement of the European Union in 2004. Nearly one million Eastern Europeans have arrived there in the past decade.

Nationwide, Punjabi was the third-most spoken language, spoken by 273,000 people, concentrated in the West Midlands, where it is the second most popular language. Urdu was in fourth place, spoken by 269,000 people.