Get prepared for Census 2021

Take part to help shape your community

The Census 2021 is coming on Sunday 21 March 2021. Please look out for a letter in the post inviting you to take part.

What is the census?

The census is a unique survey that takes place every ten years in England and Wales to provide a snapshot of all the people and households in England and Wales.

By filling in your census, you'll help make sure you and your community get the services needed now and in the future, for things such as transport, education and healthcare.

Taking part in the census will ensure Surrey receives its share of public funding. Without the census, it would be much more difficult to provide the services Surrey needs.

How to take part

The census is easy to do and can be done on any device. You will receive a letter in the post with an access code from the Office for National Statistics. Simply go online and enter the code into the secure website to get started.

Do you have to take part?

You must complete the census by law. If you do not, or if you supply false information, you could be fined up to £1,000.

When should you fill in your census questionnaire?

Census day is Sunday 21 March 2021, but you can fill yours in as soon as you get your access code in the post. Your answers should be about the people who usually live in your household on this date, even if you're filling it in before then.

Will the government use the information you have shared to identify you?

No. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) carries out the census in England and Wales. The Census team will only ever publish anonymous information from the census. In fact, it's a crime to share personal census information and any information you provide is protected.

What if you cannot fill in your census questionnaire online?

We know there are some people who will find this challenging. That's why the Census team are there to help with a wide range of support services to make it easy for you, whatever your needs.

Services include:

  • guidance and support in many languages and formats
  • help over the phone, in a web chat or on social media
  • a paper version of the questionnaire, if you prefer
  • accessible census guidance, for example, in braille

If you need help filling in your census, call 01329 444972 or email

For more information visit the Census 2021 website.

Be scam aware

  • At no point will you be asked for your bank details or any payment
  • Help to fill out your form is free
  • You will not receive any payment for completing the census, so any offers of money in exchange for your account details will be fraudulent
  • No-one will enter your home in relation to the census

You can report a fraud direct to Action Fraud online or on 0300 123 2040.

See our trading standards pages for information about scams or call 0808 223 1133 for advice.