What the census is
The census is a survey that happens every 10 years and gives us a picture of all the people and households in England and Wales. The census is unique. There’s simply nothing else that gives so much detail about us and the society we live in.
All kinds of organisations, from local authorities to charities, use the information to help provide the services we all need, including transport, education and healthcare. Without the census, it would be much more difficult to do this.
By taking part, you’ll be helping make sure you and your community get the services needed now and in the future.
The census is vital to all of us
The census helps the Office for National Statistics understand what society needs now and what it’s likely to need in the future. The information it collects helps plan and fund services in your area. This could include transport, education and healthcare.
Charities also use census information to help get the funding they need. Businesses use it to decide where to set up, which creates job opportunities.
Its success could help you
Census 2021 will help give the best picture of the needs of everyone living in England and Wales.
A total of 94% of people took part in the last census, helping each area receive its share of public funding. Without the census, it would be much more difficult to provide the services you and your community need.
You must complete the census by law
You must complete the census by law. If you do not, or if you supply false information, you could be fined up to £1,000. Some questions are clearly labelled as voluntary. It is not an offence if you do not answer these.
Moving the census online
Census 2021 will be the first digital-first census. It’s easy to do and can be done on any device. You’ll get an access code from the Office for National Statistics. Simply go online and enter the code into the secure website to get started. The Office for National Statistics will be in contact nearer the time to let you know what you need to do.
For more information, click here to download the Census 2021 leaflet.