Number of Scots aged 70 and over and living alone set to rocket

The number of people in Scotland aged 70 and over and living alone is projected to increase by 49 per cent over the next 25 years, official projections suggest.

The number of Scots aged 70 and over and living alone is expected to rise sharply in the coming years. Picture: John Devlin

The number of households north of the Border is also expected to rise by almost a third of a million in the same time period, data published by the National Records of Scotland (NRS) revealed.

Older people are more likely to live alone than younger people, and more women are expected to live alone - reflecting their greater life expectancy than men and tendency to outlive their partners.

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Anne Slater, acting chief executive and registrar general at the NRS, said: “The figures show a projected 317,000 extra households in Scotland in 2041 compared to 2016.

“This is partly because Scotland’s population is projected to increase in this period, but also because of our ageing population. Older people are more likely to live alone than younger people, and as more people live alone or in smaller households, the number of households will rise at a faster rate than the population.”

Household numbers are projected to increase in almost every council area over the next 25 years. The largest projected percentage increases are in Midlothian, East Lothian and the City of Edinburgh (36, 26 and 26 per cent increase respectively).

Household numbers are projected to fall in just four council areas: Na h-Eileanan Siar, Inverclyde, Argyll and Bute and North Ayrshire, with decreases of 6, 5, 2 and less than one per cent respectively.