Census 2021 is coming


Households across Richmond upon Thames will soon be asked to take part in Census 2021, a nationwide survey of housing and the population. The Census has been carried out every decade since 1801, with the exception of 1941 and everyone is required to complete it. Yet some have sought creative ways to avoid it.

In 1841, local resident and painter, JMW Turner, rowed a boat into the Thames so he could not be counted as being present at any property.

In the 1911 census suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst called on women to boycott the census using the slogan “If women don’t count, neither shall they be counted”.  As part of this protest Emily Davison, who tragically lost her life at the Derby two years later, hid in a cupboard in Parliament on Census night, and had her address recorded as the House of Commons.  

Information from the digital-first Census will help decide how services are planned and funded in your local area. This could mean things like doctors’ surgeries, housing or new bus routes. Households will receive a letter with a unique access code in the post, allowing them to complete their questionnaire online. Paper questionnaires will be available on request.  


This time around there will be three questions pertaining to mental health and caring duties which are: 

  • Do you have any physical or mental health conditions or illnesses lasting or expecting to last 12 months or more?  

  • Do any of your conditions or illnesses reduce your ability to carry out day-to-day activities?  

  • Do you look after, or give any help or support to, anyone because they have long-term physical or mental health conditions or illnesses, or problems relating to age? 


Census Day is March 21. For more information, please visit census.gov.uk.