NI Census 2021

Tuesday 2nd March 2021

‚ÄčThe census happens only once every 10 years and gives a picture of all the people and households in Northern Ireland. Find out more about the NI Census 2021.

Census promotion: help is available through the contact centre

What is the census?

The census happens only once every 10 years. It gives the most accurate estimate of all the people and households in Northern Ireland. The information you give in your census helps decide how services are planned and funded in your local area. This could mean things like doctors’ surgeries, housing or new bus routes. It asks questions about you and your household to build a picture of us all. It looks at who we are and how we live. It provides vital information about the society we live in and future needs.

Census Day across Northern Ireland and England & Wales will be held on the same day - 21 March 2021.

Moving the census online

This year the focus is on moving to a ‘digital-first’ census, encouraging as many people as possible to fill in their questionnaire online in 2021. It is easy to do and can be done on any device with internet connectivity. Most people will get a letter with a unique access code on it through the post. All you need to do is enter the code into the secure census website and fill in the questionnaire. There’ll be plenty of support available if you have any concerns about filling it in. If you prefer, you can still return a paper form. 

Help is available to complete your #NICensus2021

The 2021 Census is live from Monday 1 March and householders will receive their invitation packs  through the post. This also means the helplines are open for householders who may want to;

  •  request a paper copy rather than completing their Census form online,
  • to request a Large Print copy of the Census form,
  • to request a translation booket, (language helpline 0800 587 2021) or
  • to complete the Census over the phone with an interviewer.

The Census 2021 helpline telephone number is 08003282021 and lines are open M-F 8am to 8pm or Saturday 8am to 1pm. You can get in touch by phone, text relay, webchat, email or text message. For more information visit

Information about the census is available in multiple languages including sign language (BSL and ISL) on the website at Get Involved: Resources - Helping everyone take part in Census 2021 - Census 2021