Borough Profile: Merton


There are 207,141 people living in Merton, that’s 2.4% of the 8.6 million Londoners.

The average age of the population is 36.6 years old, that’s 0.7 years older than the London average. The under 16s in the borough outnumber the over 65s. Children and young people under 16 make up 21% of the population compared to 12% for the over 65s.

People who are black, Asian or of minority ethnic origin, BAME, represent 37% of the residents. 41% of the people living in Merton were born abroad. The largest migrant group according to the last census is from Poland and makes up 4% of the population. The second largest group, based on the census is from Sri Lanka. More recently the largest number of migrants have come from Poland and Romania.


The median house price in the borough is £385,000.   Owner occupiers outnumber those who rent with 22% owning their home outright and a further 33% with a mortgage compared to 29% who rent privately and a further 16% living in social housing rented from the council or a housing association.

The council tax on a Band D property (the mid-tier cost in most local authorities) is £1,401.


The crime rate in Merton is 60 crimes per 1,000 residents, which is lower than the London average of 84 and is among the lowest in the capital.

The Area

Merton covers an area of 3,763 hectares compared to the biggest borough, Bromley, which covers more than 15,000. The smallest borough, not counting the City of London, is Kensington and Chelsea, which covers around 1,200 hectares.

Some 35% of the area is classified as green space. The average for London is 38%.


The employment rate in the Merton is above the national average with 79% of people in work. The median annual salary for men is £36,765 and for women it is lower at £30,290.  The median income for a household in the borough is £57,160.

The workforce is among the highest qualified in London with 58% of workers who are educated to degree level or above. 5% have no qualifications and 4% of young people under 25 are listed as NEETS (that’s not in education, employment or training).


There are 72,777 cars in the borough, which equates to 0.9 cars per household.  Merton is rated as below average for public transport, based on an index compiled by Transport for London. According to Government data on physical activity, 19.4% of people cycle each month.

Health and Well-being

Men living in Merton can expect to live until they are 80, for women life expectancy is 84 years. The borough has a death rate from what are considered to be preventable causes of 161.8 per 100,000 people. The national rate for England is 182.

Other health indicators show that 6% of people over 17 suffer from diabetes and 22% of children are classified as obese.

When asked in a Government survey to rate their satisfaction with life the average score of people in the borough was 7.3 out of 10, which is below average for London.

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