This is the last of the four maps based on data in the 2011 Population Census and it plots the dispersal of Grahamstown’s small number of Indians or Asians (total 484).
The distribution of Grahamstown’s Indian or Asian population shows a wide spread through the former white areas. Their group area was located two kilometres almost due north of their current centre of gravity and there is still a presence around the big loop which the railway makes. Clearly, however, there has been a move away from the former group area and back towards the town’s business district and Rhodes University. This isn’t altogether unexpected as the move to a group area occurred towards the end of apartheid and was strongly resisted.
With 5657 people the white population was the third largest group in Grahamstown recorded in the 2011 Population Census. The map of their distribution shows that the centre of gravity (weighted mean centre) lies approximately one kilometre north west of the Cathedral. Most of the white population live in the northern suburbs and western side of Grahamstown with fewer numbers to the south. What is interesting to me is the scattering of white people living in the former townships: the areas that house the vast majority of the black population. There are some stories to be found that would be fascinating to hear.
The distribution of the coloured population (total 7615) is the second map in this series showing Grahamstown’s racial distributions in 2011. The main concentration is still immediately to the west of the townships, especially to the northern side of the urban area. This isn’t surprising as the coloured group area was located there: north of the railway station as a buffer between the black population (to the east) and white population (to the west) – the second map shows the former group areas as they were in the mid 1980s.
What is interesting has been the spread of the coloured population south from their apartheid group area down Lavender Valley in the direction of Fort England and also westwards into residential areas formerly reserved for whites . Their centre of gravity has been pulled slightly westwards to just beyond the old group area boundary as a consequence. There are also two concentrations located further west at the military base and Rhodes University. Lastly, there is a small concentration located in the new townships built to the north east of the old coloured group area.
This is the first of a number of posts mapping racial data and shows Grahamstown’s Black African population using information extracted from the 2011 Census.
The most detailed geographical statistics from the Population Census consist of information for very small areas (the so called small area layer). There are over 50,000 small areas in South Africa, almost 150 for Makana Municipality and 115 cover Grahamstown’s urban area. They range in population size from a few hundred people to approximately 2000.
The first map clearly shows that the Black African population (total 53,054) is mostly distributed in the Eastern side of the city. The stars on the map show the centre of gravity (weighted mean centre) for the four population groups. The centre for the Black African population is still located well within the bounds of the township areas that date back to apartheid times and earlier. The old apartheid divisions are shown on the second map. The Black African population has expanded North and South East to new housing developments. Interestingly there is a further expansion South West through the central business district to Rhodes University.