Census 2021

The 2021 Census was conducted on Sunday 21st March 2021​​​​​​​.

The census provides a detailed snapshot of people and households in England and Wales.  It is carried out by the Office for National Statistics every 10 years.  Anonymised data from the census is used by public authorities to plan and run services and allocate budgets.  Personal details are kept confidential for 100 years.

You can find out more from the Office for National Statistics by visiting Census 2021 results.

The Insight & Intelligence Hub have produced Barnet specific briefings on all Census 2021 Topic Summaries. These summaries include data on:

  • Demography and migration
  • Ethnic group, national identity, language and religion
  • Housing
  • UK armed forces veterans
  • Sexual orientation and gender identity
  • Labour market and travel to work
  • Health, disability and unpaid care
  • Education

Census Factsheet

Download a PDF version of the Barnet Census Factsheet here: Census 2021 Factsheet

Infographic style Census 2021 factsheet for Barnet.

Census Tartan Rug

A tartan rug summary of Barnet level census data down to small geographic areas know as Middle-layer Super Output Areas (MSOAs) using specific names created by the House of Commons Library and to Electoral Ward. Each census measure is ranked by colour from low to high with lower values being lighter than higher values. The aim of the tartan rug is to provide an overview of key census measures highlighting key differences between small geographical areas within Barnet. 

Download the Tartan Rug here: Census 2021 – Tartan Rug

Census Briefings

Initial Population Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Initial Population Briefing

The 2021 Census estimates the population of Barnet to be 389,300 which is a 9.2% increase on the 2011 Census. The summary key points are:​​​​​

  • The population in Barnet has grown by 9% between 2011 Census and 2021 Census, this is lower growth than predictions from 2020 Mid-Year estimates.
  • Barnet remains the second largest borough in London, the same ranking as in the 2011 Census.
  • Of 389,300 people in Barnet, 48.4% were males and 51.6% were females.
  • The population growth was largest in those over 75 years of age. Age group 0-19 has increased by 6.8% against predicted 12.9% increase in 2020 Mid-Year estimates.

Household and Legal Partnership Status Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Household and Legal Partnership Briefing

The 2021 Census estimates the total number of households in Barnet to be 148,917 which is an increase of 9.6% on the 2011 Census. The summary key points are:

  • The total number of households in Barnet has grown by 9.6% between 2011 Census and 2021 Census.
  • 1- and 2-person households make up 56% of all households in Barnet.
  • The largest growth in household size was in the number of 3-person households which increased by 16.3%. The only decrease in household size was in the number of 6-person households.
  • The average number of people per household remains the same as the 2011 Census at 2.6 people per household, which is the same as London.
  • Barnet’s population density in 2021 is 4,489 persons per square kilometre which has increased by 8.9% from 2011 and is in-line with other Outer London boroughs.
  • 61% of all households in Barnet were single family households, 28% were one person households and 11% were multiple family households .
  • The number of households with at least one dimension of deprivation decreased by 6.4% compared to the 2011 Census with 50% of all households in Barnet having at least one dimension of deprivation.
  • The total percentage of those in an opposite-sex marriage has remained the same as the 2011 Census at 46.8%

Migration Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Migration Briefing

The 2021 Census estimates the total number of Barnet’s population born in the United Kingdom to be 221,293 which makes up 56.8% of the total population of Barnet. In the 2011 Census, 217,890 were born in the United Kingdom and was 61.1% of the total population. The key summary points are:

  • Those born in the United Kingdom that reside in Barnet in 2021 fell by -4.3% vs Census 2011.
  • Countries of birth that had the highest increase include Romania at a 200% increase and Iran with a 55% increase from 2011 to 2021.
  • Countries and regions that saw the largest decrease include, Ireland, Poland and Southern and South-East Asia.
  • The number of those residents who do not hold a passport fell from 19,813 in 2011 to 16,789 which is a reduction of -1.3%.
  • Those aged 25 to 59 arriving in the United Kingdom and residing in Barnet in 2021 have seen an increase, especially in the 30 to 44 age range.
  • Those that have resided in the United Kingdom for 10 years or more make up 26.9% of Barnet’s total population. This is an increase of 5.3% since the 2011 Census.

Ethnicity, Religion & Language Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Ethnicity, Religion & Language Briefing

  • Barnet’s population comprised of 57.7% from a white background, 19.3% from an Asian background, 7.9% from a black background, 5.4% from a mixed background and 9.8% from other ethnic groups in the 2021 Census.
  • Those that reside in Barnet and identified as white British made up 36.2% of the population and had reduced by 21,340 vs the 2011 Census (45.5%).
  • Those that identified as “Other ethnic group: Any other ethnic group” increased by 153.5% from 2011 (12,105 (2011) vs 30,687 (2021).
  • Residents that described themselves as having “No religion” had the largest increase in Barnet from Census 2011 to Census 2021 with 20.2% of Barnet’s population identifying as having no religion, which is an increase of 4.1% from 2011.
  • Those that resided in Barnet and described themselves as “Christian” decreased by 4.7% vs the 2011 Census.
  • Those that described themselves as “Jewish” made up 14.5% of the population in Barnet; this is 12.9% more than the London average of 1.7%.
  • 77.1% of residents aged over 3 years old stated that English was their main language, this is an increase of 0.5% from the 2011 Census, but 1.3% below the 2021 London average.
  • 95.9% of Barnet’s population self-identify as being proficient in the English language which is the same as the London 2021 average.

UK Armed Forces & Veterans Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Armed Forces Veterans Briefing

  • In 2021, 1,853,112 people (3.8% of usual residents aged 16 years and over) in England and Wales reported that they had previously served in the UK armed forces compared to 745,765 (2% of working age population in England and Wales) in Census 2011.
  • Of the UK armed forces veterans in England and Wales, 76.3% (1.4 million people) previously served in the regular forces compared to 65.6% (2569) in Barnet. In England and Wale, 19.5% (361,000 people) served in the reserve forces compared to 30.6% (1,197) in Barnet, and nationally, 4.3% (79,000 people) served in both the regular and reserve forces compared to 3.8% (151) in Barnet.
  • 2.0% of UK armed forces veterans (37,000) lived in communal establishments in England and Wales compared to 2.4% (95) in Barnet and the remainder (slightly over 1.8 million, 98.0%) lived in households compared to 97.6% (3,822) in Barnet.
  • There were 1.7 million households in England and Wales (7.0% of all households) with one or more persons who had served in the UK armed forces compared to 3,716 households (2.5% of all households) in Barnet.

Labour Market & Travel to Work Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Labour Market and Travel to Work Briefing

  • Census 2021 took place during the COVID-19 pandemic, a period of unparalleled and rapid change that had a vast effect on employment and the labour force across the country. The economically active population includes people who were put on furlough at the time of Census 2021, who were considered to be temporarily away from work. At the time of Census 2021, 32,900 people were furloughed in Barnet.
  • 64.6% of residents in Barnet in the 2021 Census are classified as economically active which is a reduction of 6.8% against the 2011 Census.
  • Residents classified as being ‘economically inactive due to retirement’ had the largest increase with 14.9% of Barnet’s population noting they are retired, this is an increase of 6.8% versus the 2011 Census.
  • In 2021, 32.1% of Barnet’s labour force worked in part-time roles, this is an increase of 3.4% versus the 2011 Census. Those in full-time employment in 2021 decreased by 3.4% against the 2011 Census.
  • 42.8% of Barnet’s workforce in 2021 stated that they mainly work from home which is an increase of 35.4% from the 2011 Census.
  • The occupation type that had the largest increase in 2021 for Barnet were those in manager, director and senior official roles with 16.9% of Barnet’s workforce being in these occupations. This is an increase of 3.4% from the 2011 Census and is 2.4% higher than the London average of 14.6% in 2021.

Housing Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Housing Briefing

  • Purpose-built block of flats or tenement continues to be the most common type of accommodation in Barnet in 2021 (36.6% of total households). This type of accommodation also demonstrated greatest growth from the 2011 to 2021 Census (26.1%).
  • Compared to 2011, in 2021, the percentage of households in Barnet owning at least 1 car or van declined by 1.2%, although the number of those households rose by 7.7% from the 2011 to 2021 Census.
  • Gas remains the most popular type of central heating in 2021 Barnet (75.4%).
  • In both 2011 and 2021 censuses, the three most prevalent communal establishments were Care Home without Nursing, Education and Care Home with Nursing.
  • While 3-bedroom (30.9%) and 2-bedroom properties (30.1%) were most common in 2011 Barnet, 2-bedroom properties have become most prevalent (29.8%) in 2021.
  • Occupancy rating for bedrooms, which refers to the difference between the number of bedrooms needed and the number available per household, indicated that about 90% of households in Barnet were not crowded in both 2011 and 2021 censuses.
  • In both 2011 and 2021, owned accommodations were the most common type of tenure, followed by private rented and social accommodations. 
  • In both 2011 and 2021, nearly 95% of usual residents in Barnet did not have second address.
  • For those who have second address in 2021 Barnet, another parent or guardian’s address was the leading purpose (26.2%).

Health, Disability & Unpaid Care Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Health, Disability and Unpaid Care Briefing

  • 85.9% of Barnet’s population consider themselves to be in very good or good health. This is a 1.4% increase from the 2011 Census and 1.9% above the 2021 Census average of all local authorities in London.
  • 12.8% of Barnet’s population are disabled under the Equality Act (2010), with their day-to-day activities being limited a little (7.1%) or a lot (5.7%). This is a 1.2% decrease from the 2011 Census and 1.4% lower than the 2021 Census average of all local authorities in London.
  • 26.3% of households in Barnet have one or more people disabled under the Equality Act (2010). This is a 2.1% decrease compared to the 2011 Census and is 0.3% below the 2021 Census average of all local authorities in London.
  • 7.9% of Barnet’s population provide unpaid care. The proportion providing 19 hours or less unpaid care a week has decreased by 1.7% since the 2011 Census (from 6.0% to 4.3%) whilst the proportion providing 20 hours or more unpaid care a week has risen by 0.5% compared to the 2011 Census (from 3.1% to 3.6%).
  • Barnet has the second highest percentage of its population providing 19 hours or less unpaid care per week (4.5%) of all local authorities in London, with only Bromley having a higher percentage (4.6%). Barnet is 0.7% above the 2021 Census average of all local authorities in London (3.8%).

Gender Identity & Sexual Orientation Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Gender and Sexual Orientation Briefing

  • The questions on gender identity and sexual orientation in the Census 2021 were voluntary and were only asked of residents aged 16 years and over in Barnet.
  • In Barnet, about 280,000 residents (90.9%) answered “Yes”, and 2,550 residents (0.8%) answered “No” to the question “Is the gender you identify with the same as your sex registered at birth?”. About 25,000 residents (8.2%) did not answer the question.
  • The question on sexual orientation asked the residents to choose an option that best describes their sexual orientation, which included straight or heterosexual, gay or lesbian, bisexual, and other sexual orientation.
  • In Barnet, about 270,000 residents (87.3%) identified themselves as straight or heterosexual, 8,633 residents (2.8%) identified with an LGB+ orientation (gay or lesbian, bisexual, or other sexual orientation, as categorised by the Office of National Statistics). About 30,000 residents (9.9%) did not answer the question.

Education Briefing

Read briefing here: Census 2021 – Education Briefing

  • ‘Level 4 qualification or above’ (49% in 2021) and ‘No qualification’ (15.4% in 2021) were the most common types of qualification level achieved by Barnet residents in both 2011 and 2021.
  • From the 2011 to 2021 census, the number of Barnet residents with ‘Level 4 qualification or above’ increased by 33.2% and those with ‘No qualification’ increased by 9%.
  • About 23% of Barnet residents aged 5 years and over are full-time students.

ONS National Tools

The Office for National Statistics have created several interactive tools for looking at and mapping the Census 2021 data, including:

  • Census maps – an interactive tool to explore Census 2021 topic summary data down to the neighbourhood level
  • Change over time – to see how Barnet’s population has changed since the 2011 Census
  • Custom Area Profile – to build a custom area profile for Barnet using Census 2021 data
  • Nomis Area Profile – to view Census 2021 data tables for Barnet
  • Create a custom dataset – to look for interactions between topics and to build your own Census 2021 datasets

Census 2021 data © Crown copyright 2022 Source:

Office for National Statistics licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.