Welcome to Waltham Forest

The London Borough of Waltham Forest is a vibrant outer London borough in north London, we have a thriving business district and close transport links to central London.
Bursting with culture, energy, and opportunity, Waltham Forest is a great place, benefiting from a blend of ages, heritage and local history where people want to live, work and visit.

About Waltham Forest

  • Waltham Forest is one of thirty two London boroughs, bordering Hackney, Haringey, Enfield, Redbridge and Epping Forest District Council, in north-east London.
  • Within the borough we have four main neighbourhood areas with a distinct identity: Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone, and Walthamstow.
  • An estimated 278,400 residents call Waltham Forest home.
  • Waltham Forest has a younger-than-average population with 24.5 per cent of residents being aged 0 to 19 compared to 23 per cent in London and nationally.
  • Like London, Waltham Forest also has a high proportion of working-age adults aged 16 to 64 (69.6 per cent compared to 68.9 per cent in London and 62.9 per cent nationally).
  • There are proportionately fewer people aged over 65 living in Waltham Forest (10.2 per cent) compared to London (11.9 per cent) and the UK average (18.6 per cent).
  • We are one of the most diverse areas in the country (top 20) with an estimated 47 per cent of residents are from a minority ethnic background.
  • According to the 2021 Census, the top three countries of origin for residents born overseas are Romania, Pakistan and Other EU countries. 
  • The top languages spoken locally other than English are Romanian, Urdu, Bulgarian, Polish, Turkish and Spanish. 
  • Waltham Forest full-time workers in 2023 have a median weekly income of £764.8 just below the London average £796.30higher than the median income for England £682.60.
  • Waltham Forest's deprivation score is 25.209, which means it is ranked number 12 out of all London Boroughs (excluding the City of London) and number 79 out of all 317 authorities in England (LG Inform).

Our Population Projections 

  • Population projections estimate that the Waltham Forest population will increase from 276,350 residents in 2021 to a total of 287,800 by 2026.
  • The fastest growing group is projected to be those aged 18-21 (13.5 per cent) and 65+ (15.5 per cent). 

Our health and disability

  • A total of 12,300 residents considered their health to be bad or very bad. This is equivalent to 6 per cent of the population.
  • Health tends to deteriorate further with age with 42 per cent of population aged 65 and over (10,906) having a limiting long-term health problem or disability. 
  • Waltham Forest's Health Index score increased in 2021. The borough has an overall Health Index score of 104.1, which is up 3.6 points compared with the previous year. 

(A score of 100 represents average levels of health in England in 2015. A higher number always means better health and a lower number means worse health). 

Educational settings

  • In Waltham Forest, there are currently 51 primary schools, 15 secondary schools, four Family Hubs, four 16 plus, three nurseries and two all-through.
  • In total, there’s approximately 45,000 pupils in Waltham Forest. There are almost twice as many primary school students as there is secondary. 

Please visit our Data Hub if you would like to find out more about the demographics in Waltham Forest, including data briefs, posters, Power BI dashboard, charts and ONS’s tools.