Sending children to private schools has long been a popular choice for parents in West London. But in one small area of Westminster the figures are still surprising. 85% of the children aged 4-11 in Knightsbridge and Belgravia ward are absent from the state school roll and presumed to be in independent schools.
The figures were produced by the GLA in its research on demand for school places.
Knightsbridge and Belgravia ward is a neighbourhood of ultra-expensive residential property to the south of Hyde Park. In contrast there are 114 wards in London, around 18%, that have no children of primary age attending an independent school. Many of these areas are in the less affluent eastern boroughs of Barking and Dagenham, Newham, Havering and Bexley.
The GLA calculates that across London 12.8% of children aged between 4-15 are in independent schools, and this is most prevalent in south west and central London, particularly Westminster, and Kensington and Chelsea.
Data from the Department for Education shows the rate is 10.6% if children 16-18 are taken into account, and the rate has been steady for the past 4 years. Across London 146,000 children are being educated privately.
When mapped at borough level the east/west divide becomes clear, with the exception of the City of London where there is just 1 state primary and 4 independents.
6 boroughs, Wandsworth, Richmond, Hammersmith and Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea, Westminster and Camden account for 40% of the children in private education.
Boroughs on the eastern edge of the capital have little private education. In Barking and Dagenham it is less than 1%, just 115 of the 40,000 school-age children in the borough.
Only the South East matches London for the proportion of children in independent schools. Nationally the rate is 7%. Many parts of London are well below that rate underlining the contrast between rich and poor in the city.