• Andy Robson

When Will the 1921 Census be Published?


Many of us are no doubt eagerly awaiting the publication of the 1921 census for an extra bit of information that we can’t get anywhere else. Findmypast has been selected as The National Archives’ commercial partner to make the 1921 Census of England & Wales available online. The data will be published online in January 2022.


Searching the 1921 Census will be free on Findmypast but viewing any images or transcriptions will not. I saw one site quoting £10 per image although Findmypast haven’t announced anything as yet.


Findmypast also won the contract to publish the 1911 census. I believe it took 2-3 years for the records to be rolled out to the other Family History sites, so it looks like you'll need to get your debit card out if you want to look something up anytime soon.


The 1921 census consists of more than 28,000 volumes of original household returns containing information on nearly 38 million individuals. In addition to the questions asked in 1911, the 1921 returns also asked householders to reveal their place of employment, the industry they worked in and the materials they worked with as well as their employer’s name.


For those over the age of 15 information about marital status, including if divorced was given. For those under 15 the census recorded whether both parents were alive or if either or both parents had died. It also had detailed questions on education including whether you were in full-time or part-time education


Will the 2021 census be postponed due to Coronavirus? The 2021 census is going ahead in England and Wales on 21st March as planned, despite the national pandemic. In Scotland however, the 2021 census has been deferred to March 2022. Interestingly, this is not the first census to be delayed. The 1921 census should have been taken on 24 April, but was delayed by nearly two months to 19th June in the wake of the Black Friday strike by Railwaymen, Coal Miners and Transport Workers.


We have a long time to wait until the next census is released. This will not take place until until January 2052 when the 1951 census will be available. The 1931 census was taken in April 1931 but was completely destroyed in a fire in 1942 at the Office of Works. There was no census for England and Wales in 1941 due to the Second World War, which is why the 1939 Register is such an important document.