Working together to deliver a successful Census 2021.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) – which runs Census 2021 – is working with Havering Council to deliver a successful census and help local services to fully meet future needs.  

Understanding the needs of the nation helps everyone from central government to local organisations, such as councils and health authorities, plan and fund public services across England and Wales. The data collected from the census informs where public funding is spent on everything from transport and education to health and leisure facilities.

The census will take place on Sunday 21 March 2021. Households will begin receiving letters with online codes in early March explaining how they can complete their online census. People can also request a paper questionnaire if they’d prefer to complete the census that way.  

Havering Council will provide support and guidance to those residents not able to complete the census online.

The ONS also conduct surveys to monitor population changes and also help track the spread of COVID-19. If you have received and completed one of those over the last year you must still complete the Census 2021 on Sunday 21 March.

The main census field operation will begin only after Census Day, contacting those who have not responded. Field staff will never need to enter people’s houses; they will always be socially distanced, wear personal protective equipment and work in line with all government guidance. They will be operating in the same way as a postal or food delivery visit.

Census 2021 will include questions about your sex, age, work, health, education, household size and ethnicity. And, for the first time, there will be a question asking people whether they have served in the armed forces, as well as voluntary questions for those aged 16 and over on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Results will be available in 12 months, although personal records will be locked away for 100 years, kept safe for future generations.

For more information and advice on how to answer the questions, visit

Havering Council Leader, Councillor Damian White, said:

“The Census is a vital tool in helping us understand who lives in our borough and what we need to do to serve them in the future. If you can, please complete the Census online as that is the safest, easiest way, but Havering Council will provide help for those who cannot manage to do that.”

Havering Council’s lead officer for Census 2021, Sandy Hamberger, said:

“We know that Havering has changed a huge amount in the ten years since the last Census. The borough is increasingly diverse and now has a fast growing young population, while at the same time having one of the largest proportions of older residents of any London borough. This, coupled with the changes we have seen over the last year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and EU exit, make it more important than ever that we have accurate and up-to-date information about the needs of our local population, to inform our future decision making. We are proud to be working with ONS to ensure that Census 2021 is a success.”

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