On 27 March 2011 all residential households in the United Kingdom will be taking part in a census. There has been a Census every 10 years since 1801 (except 1941).
You have 10 days after this date to return your form.
The census provides information about the population. This assists central and local government, health authorities and other organisations to identify housing, education, health and transport needs for years to come. For instance, water companies use the census data to plan the pipes for clean and waste water. Fire brigades and the police use census data to help communities, putting fire alarms and crime prevention measures in specific areas. The benefits are far reaching.
Census statistics also feed into the allocation of funding for local authorities and play a major part in identifying need for local services in communities. The statistics can highlight areas of particular groups, such as young children, elderly people, commuters – channelling funding to the areas that need it most, for instance more school places, day centres, play parks. So it is crucial the population estimate is as accurate as possible.
The Census also provides a rich source of information for family historians. Personal information is not released for 100 years, data from 1911 was released earlier this year. Census data gives families an insight into where their ancestors originated from and how they moved around the country.
The 2011 Census doesn’t want anyone to fall behind – there is a wide range of help options available such as language guidance booklets, large print format, Text Relay, as well as online help and telephone call centres. Census field staff are on hand in your area to assist anyone who made need it, please call the Census helpline 03000 0201 101 if you or someone you know needs assistance on completing their form.
More information about the 2011 Census can be found at: www.census.gov.uk