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Census 2021

The census is happening in March 2021

The census is for everyone. Once every 10 years, it helps build the most complete picture of England and Wales. The whole population has the chance to provide the information that ensures all communities are represented in decisions on funding and services.

The census is so important that it's compulsory for everyone in England and Wales to take part. We at the Office for National Statistics (ONS), are responsible for making it as easy as possible for everyone to join in.

Download the following documents for further information:

Have you got your census letter?

Households across the region are being asked to take part in Census 2021. Census day is on March 21, but households will now be receiving letters with online codes explaining how they can complete their forms. If you don't get one in the next couple of weeks, please get in touch with the census contact centre on 0800 141 2021. You can also request a paper questionnaire if you'd prefer to complete your census that way.

Local census support centres will be available while the census is happening. Staff will offer help for people not confident online, who don't have a computer or need help completing on paper. Currently, most of the census support centres are offering a telephone-only service due to national and local COVID-19 guidance. To find your nearest census support centre, please visit

The census is a once-in-a-decade survey that gives us the most accurate estimate of all the people and households in England and Wales. It has been carried out every decade since 1801, with the exception of 1941. For more information, and to find out how to get help, visit or call the contact centre on 0800 141 2021.

Nine out of ten households have completed

There has been a fantastic response to Census 2021 - nine out of ten households across England and Wales have completed their questionnaire. But every household is required by law to complete the census and though Census Day (21 March 2021) has been and gone, it is not too late to fill out your form and avoid a fine.

Most people have already completed their census online to make sure public services like GP surgeries, hospital beds, school places and public transport, are based on the most up to date information.

Iain Bell, the deputy national statistician at the Office for National Statistics in charge of the census, urged everyone to look out for reminder letters and fill out their census now.

“We’ve had an amazing response to the census so far,” Iain said. “I’d like to thank everyone who has helped us exceed all expectations.

“But we want to make sure everyone counts and we won’t rest until every household has responded. Field officers are out and about knocking on doors where records show we have had no response. If you don’t want to get a visit, please complete your census now.

“Your response is vital. The information you give means all the services we rely on, like school places and emergency services, are planned on accurate information. It is even used to plan where to build new supermarkets, what food to put on the shelves and how many parent and toddler spaces to put in the car park.”

The census questionnaire is simple, straightforward, and safe to complete online. It only takes 10 minutes per person in a home.

All households were sent a letter in the post in early March with instructions for taking part. If you have lost the letter or have a second address - including a caravan - you have not visited, go to to request an online completion code for your address via SMS text message.

If you know someone who doesn't have the skills or confidence to do the census online, help is at hand. We have local census support centres across England and Wales, offering phone and face to face support. Go to to find a centre near you. You can also call our freephone contact centre. Call 0800 141 2021 in England for help or to order a paper questionnaire.

Image of poster asking 'Do you need help to complete the census?'

Click the image above to download a PDF version of the poster

Do you need help to complete the census?

Get help on our website, at a Census Support Centre* or on the phone (England 0800 141 2021, Wales 0800 169 2021). Guidance available in 49 languages and accessible formats.

You must complete the census by law. To do yours now, visit

*When safe to do so, subject to COVID-19 guidance.