Households across the town will be asked to take part in Census 2021 next month.
The census, run by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), 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 ten years since 1801, with the exception of 1941.
Understanding the needs of the nation helps everyone from central government to organisations such as councils and health services plan and fund public services across England and Wales. Census outputs inform where public funding is spent in areas like transport, education and health care.
Information from the census is also important in helping lots of other people and organisations do their work.
Charities and voluntary organisations often use it as evidence to get funding. It helps businesses to understand their customers and, for example, decide where to open new shops. People doing research, like university students looking into their family history, use census data.
Town Mayor, Cllr Sally Ann Holland, said “ I really hope everyone living in Congleton will fill in the census 2021 on Sunday 21st March. By taking part, the information that you provide can help inform decisions on services that shape our community, such as school places, doctors’ and dentist surgeries, hospital beds, roads and bike lanes. Because these things matter to all of us, obtaining a true snapshot of Congleton townsfolk is very important and affects the amount of investment that Cheshire East Council receives from central government to spend in the area.
“In one way or another, your information touches the lives of every single person living in the town. It’s easy to do your bit, you’ll receive an access code in the post, enter the code on the secure website to get started. If you can do so safely, offer help to family and friends who need support to fill in the form. No one should miss out, paper forms will be available for those who are not able to fill in the online census. As a family we will be filling in our information.”
The Census 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 whether people 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 within 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 census.gov.uk/contact-us. The ONS will be opening a free contact centre on Monday 1 March.