Mayor Lutfur Rahman tours the “census bus” as part of national campaign

Tower Hamlets mayor Lutfur Rahman launched an information campaign to let people in the borough know about the importance of the national census on Monday.

Along with Glen Watson, the census director of the Office of National Statistics, Mr Rahman toured a specially kitted-out purple double-decker “census bus” in Old Spitalfields Market.

The bus contains an exhibition about the census and advisors who can answer questions from members of the public in a number of languages.

They will be on hand to let people know why census forms should be completed and provide information on how to do so.

Census statistics are used by councils to plan their funding of public services.

Mr Rahman said: “Over the past ten years Tower Hamlets has undergone enormous change.

“People have moved into the borough and people have moved out.

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“The census provides an opportunity to capture that change and plan services that meet the needs of our diverse community.”

Following its stop in Spitalfields, the bus is going to tour the country ahead of “Census Day” on March 27 as part of the �482 million information-gathering exercise – double the cost since the last census in 2001.

The population of the UK is measured by the government every 10 years with a census in England and Wales and separate surveys in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Questionaires will be put through letterboxes in March and it can also be completed online at

People must include detailed information about subjects including their religion, nationality and marital status and it is compulsory to complete the census - failure to do so can lead to a fine of up to �1,000.