The total white blood cell count, and in particular, the neutrophil count, has been reported to be positively associated with the risk of cardiovascular disease. The aim of this study is to clarify the association between hypertension and peripheral blood neutrophil count as an inflammatory marker in the occupational setting. 1,244 Japanese men and women were examined controlling for confounding factors. In men, the age, the product of the daily amount of liquor consumed and the weekly drinking frequency, current history of diabetes mellitus, Body Mass Index, and the peripheral blood neutrophil count were associated with an increased odds ratio for hypertension (1.08, 1.06, 1.89, 2.94 and 1.21, respectively); in contrast, a current history of smoking was inversely related to the risk of hypertension (odds ratio 0.53). In women, a current history of diabetes mellitus and the peripheral blood neutrophil count were associated with an increased odds ratio for hypertension (8.29 and 1.93, respectively). The peripheral blood neutrophil count was positively associated with the risk of hypertension in both men and women, independent of age, alcohol consumption, smoking status, history of diabetes mellitus and Body Mass Index. Follow-up studies and further research are needed to confirm this association.