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Archiver > ESSEX-UK > 2010-07 > 1278859478

From: Steve <>
Subject: Re: [Ess] The final Census?
Date: Sun, 11 Jul 2010 15:44:38 +0100
References: <><02b801cb20ec$d2d90600$788b1200$>
In-Reply-To: <02b801cb20ec$d2d90600$788b1200$>

If anybody can suggest a practical way of collecting, lets say the
minimal data as in the recently released 1911, that will be either more
efficient or cheaper than the existing method of delivering a census
form to each household, I would be interested to hear about it.

As I found out here, when trying to work out why a family of ancestors
seemed to keep changing their names on subsequent censuses, anxiety
about privacy is nothing new and for some was in some way driven by
their religious beliefs.

I do however agree that some in the family history community have done
great harm by suggesting that promises made and placed in law by one set
of politicians should be over-ridden by another set for no very good reason.


On 11/07/2010 12:33, Caroline Bradford wrote:
> As a family historian, the idea that Government should create a single,
> comprehensive database of named individuals, full of useful genealogical
> facts, every ten years, is enormously attractive, but as a tax-payer I would
> prefer my elected representatives to spend my hard earned cash on the best
> method possible of providing the statistical information which they require
> to do their job properly. There is very sound evidence that the full-blown
> census is a hugely inefficient and costly way of providing this statistical
> data (for an entertaining way of understanding the arguments, there is no
> better resource than the episode of The West Wing entitled "Mr Willis of
> Ohio").
> Genealogical data is a by-product of the main purpose of the census, and
> always has been. Compliance has been plummeting over the decades, not
> least, I am sure, due to anxieties about privacy. The family history
> community, with its constant clamour for early release of information which
> had been provided in the strictest confidence, may even be partially to
> blame for the reluctance of individuals to provide such information.
> Caroline
>> An article in Friday's Telegraph has been drawn to my attention, where
>> Francis Maude, Cabinet Office minister, says that the government has
>> already decided to scrap future censuses.
>> Linked to here

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