The next nationwide census, carried out by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), will take place in March 2021. The ONS is appealing for everybody to take part.
The census is a nationwide survey carried out every ten years. It collects anonymised information about all people and households in the UK, building up a detailed ‘snapshot’ of society in the country.
Censuses are carried out by most countries in the world, and have been conducted since ancient times. The Domesday Book was a famous early census, which was carried out in England and parts of Wales after the Norman Conquest.
In modern times, data from censuses is used by local authorities like Telford & Wrekin Council, and national authorities like the UK government, to plan and deliver public services such as education and public health services. Lawley and Overdale Parish Council relies on census data to get an accurate picture of the parish population. The data is also used by a wide range of other groups, from businesses to voluntary organisations.
For these reasons, it is important that as many people as possible take part, and complete their census questionnaires as accurately as they can.
Census 2021 will be different than past censuses. For example, it will be the first census you can complete online. Challenges from the coronavirus pandemic have also delayed Scotland’s census until 2022.
‘Census Day’ in England and Wales will be 21 March 2021, and the ONS is asking everybody to take part. People will start to receive more information closer to that date.
“By taking part and encouraging others to do the same, you’ll help make sure you and your community get the services you need,” the ONS says.