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Census information webinar with ONS

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We held a digital information session with the Office of National Statistics for our members and friends on 11 February, ahead of the census in England and Wales on 21 March. Watch the recording below to find out more about engagement during lockdown, the different ways to complete the form, and how to record ‘Irishness’ in census 2021.

Irish in Britain (and as the Federation of Irish Societies until 2013) has worked closely with the ONS on three previous censuses and we remain part of its Diversity Advisory Group. We ran a ‘How Irish Are You?’ campaign in 2011 which raised awareness about the Irish ethnicity category among second and third generation people, so that the size of the diaspora in Britain would be reflected in the data.

Census webinar recording

This year’s census is different: it is the first that will be completed online by most and we are facing severe restrictions on everyday life brought about by the pandemic. It was really useful therefore to hold a webinar with Kat Paes from the ONS engagement team, which was attended members and friends from across England and Wales. A recording of the webinar is below.


The census is an immensely important event for the Irish community as it provides data on where people live, their occupations and education, and their identity.

We will shortly be publishing a census information page, including different ways to fill in the form, how to record ‘Irishness’, new questions, and how the ONS is responding to the pandemic.

Many thanks to Kat for speaking and to everyone who attended!