Author Topic: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?  (Read 1478 times)

Offline Erato

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #18 on: Friday 12 October 18 16:05 BST (UK) »
It's only 75 years in the United States but no one gets too exercised about it. 
Wiltshire:  Banks, Taylor
Somerset:  Duddridge, Richards, Barnard, Pillinger
Gloucestershire:  Barnard, Marsh, Crossman
Bristol:  Banks, Duddridge, Barnard
Down:  Ennis, McGee
Wicklow:  Chapman, Pepper
Wigtownshire:  Logan, Conning
Wisconsin:  Ennis, Chapman, Logan, Ware
Maine:  Ware, Mitchell, Tarr

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Offline Paulo Leeds

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #19 on: Friday 12 October 18 16:32 BST (UK) »
Some falsely think that "when the census was taken that they were promised the info would be closed for 100 years". Such a promise was never made, and I am sure our expert Guy can vouch for that.

very interesting posts by Guy, how does he know so much?

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Offline stanmapstone

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #20 on: Friday 12 October 18 16:41 BST (UK) »
Some falsely think that "when the census was taken that they were promised the info would be closed for 100 years". Such a promise was never made, and I am sure our expert Guy can vouch for that.

very interesting posts by Guy, how does he know so much?

Just Google "Guy Etchells"

Stan
Mapstone, Mapston.
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Offline Blue70

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #21 on: Friday 12 October 18 17:21 BST (UK) »
So is anyone going for one of those cleaner jobs then? ;D

I'm happy with what we have at the moment. There's the 1939 Register, electoral registers and directories. I can wait for the 1921 census it's less important to me than earlier census records. I have a good idea of what each family household consisted of, where they were living and where they worked. My families after moving around a lot in the 19th century, stayed at the same addresses in the 20th century for long periods.


Blue

Offline Paulo Leeds

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #22 on: Friday 12 October 18 17:29 BST (UK) »
So is anyone going for one of those cleaner jobs then? ;D

I'm happy with what we have at the moment. There's the 1939 Register, electoral registers and directories. I can wait for the 1921 census it's less important to me than earlier census records. I have a good idea of what each family household consisted of, where they were living and where they worked. My families after moving around a lot in the 19th century, stayed at the same addresses in the 20th century for long periods.


Blue

imagine getting caught red-handed with your mop, your feather duster, and a segment of the 1951 census  ;D

Offline Blue70

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #23 on: Friday 12 October 18 20:02 BST (UK) »
Family history researchers must be a well behaved bunch. I've never heard of census records being available on the black market or bootleg copies being circulated ;D.


Blue

Offline jaybelnz

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #24 on: Friday 12 October 18 21:15 BST (UK) »
In NZ, and after the nations demographic details have been collated, our Census documents are destroyed by the powers that be.

The only way we can find out where our people lived, are the old electoral rolls!  Better than nothing, but that only gives us those that have registered to vote, and no other family members
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Online Guy Etchells

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #25 on: Friday 12 October 18 21:34 BST (UK) »
Why exactly are the censusís secret for 100 years?

Very often when people mention the 100 year rule for access to census someone claims it was imposed because people were assured it would be closed for 100 years.

WRONG !
There was no 100 year privacy commitment until 1966.
The 100 year closure rule was created in 1966 by the Lord Chancellor.

The first census to claim the census would remain closed for 100 years was the 1981 census.

In 1981 the Registrar General made a promise on the 1981 census forms that the census would be closed for 100 years, this commitment was repeated on the 1991 and 2001 census forms. Unfortunately the Registrar General did not have the authority to make such claims and so that promise was not worth the paper it was printed on.
In fact the Registrar General who made that claim, Arthur Roger Thatcher, had to write to parliament to apologise for exceeding his authority by making such a claim.
In earlier census there was a commitment the census would remain confidential but no time limit was placed on this confidentiality.

The census are kept secret for 100 years for a very simple reason, the Registrar General lied.

Where are they stored?
Census up to 1911 are stored at the National Archives, but as the originals are not accessed on a regular frequency most likely at one of the National Archives out-stores or in one of the Cheshire salt mines used for storage.

The 1921 to 2011 census are still stored at/by the GRO, some are still being accessed and some will be out-stores.

...also do you think staff who protect them and cleaners who service the room (s) in which they are kept ever have a sneaky look if they are left in the building alone last thing on a Friday? (lol)
I am certain the staff do access closed records at both the GRO and the National Archives some will do so in the line of duty some will do so unofficially, it is naive to think otherwise.

I find it so tantalising that they are sat there somewhere in England, but yet so utterly unobtainable
Not so much tantalising, more annoying. During much of my life as a family historian many of the closed records including closed census were available on request and payment of a fee,
The modern ideal of secrecy (often to hide dubious actions) has led to more and more records being inaccessible.
E.G. Until 1976/7 it was possible to visit a superintendent registrarís office and search the Birth, Marriage and Death registers in person, which I did on many occasions up and down the country.

Cheers
Guy

PS According to the Census Act, 1920, as amended and the Census (Confidentiality) Act 1991 I used to claim "it is illegal to release any census taken under the 1920 Census Act at any time in the future unless there is a change in the law".
The loop hole that is going to be used could have been used many years ago to release the 1921 census but the genealogical world were not interested in more census being released. This is because the above laws have been amended but the amendments have not been put into action.
Guy
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Offline Paulo Leeds

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Re: Why exactly are census's secret for 100 years? Where are they stored?
« Reply #26 on: Saturday 13 October 18 10:28 BST (UK) »
Family history researchers must be a well behaved bunch. I've never heard of census records being available on the black market or bootleg copies being circulated ;D.


Blue

true, and you often hear of albums being leaked etc...