Time to fill in your census

Date published: 15 March 2021

Households across the borough are being asked to take part in the census - the nationwide survey of housing and the population. Here’s what you need to know...

You should have received an invitation pack in the post containing a unique access code that will enable you to fill in the survey online – on computer, phone or tablet.

The pack also contains answers to questions you may have as well as information about how to complete the census and access it in different languages and accessible formats, including a paper copy if you need one. Some residents may receive a traditional paper questionnaire along with a pre-paid envelope.

If you haven’t received anything by 17 March, phone 0800 141 2021.

It’s really important you take part and it will only take a few minutes to complete.

Start your census online now.


Census 2021


Your responses will help decide how services are planned and funded in the borough. This could mean things like doctors’ surgeries, housing, education, transport and more. We need to properly understand society so we can better plan. How do we build infrastructure, or plan for hospitals and education, without knowing who’s in the country? And after the challenges and disruption of the past 12 months Census 2021 will provide fresh information to allow organisations to provide services that meet the needs of our changing society.

Because the results help decide where billions of pounds get spent – it’s crucial that everyone in the borough of Rochdale is counted. Otherwise we will miss out on funding for these life-saving and life-enhancing public services.

The borough of Rochdale could lose out if everyone isn’t included in ONS' population estimates. Everybody being counted will make sure we get the funding we deserve.

Completing the census is also a legal requirement and anyone who does not complete it, or provides false information, could be fined up to £1,000. Census officers will be visiting households that don’t respond to the survey to offer help.

Census day is March 21 but you can complete it online as soon as you receive your code.


2021 will be the first census to be run predominantly online


There is support available for anyone who needs help filling it in, including guidance over the phone. 6 drop in locations at libraries (Rochdale, Alkrington, Castleton, Darnhill, Balderstone, Spotland) are open, providing free access to a computer as well as trained staff available to provide assistance and answer questions.

There are also 2 Census Support Centres in the borough - The Flowhesion Foundation at Wardleworth Community Centre and Mainway Insurance on Milkstone Road in Rochdale.

Find out how to get support and help with filling in the census in person, by phone or by text.

The Office for National Statistics runs the census in England and Wales and is independent from government. Your details are protected by law and information published is always anonymous.

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