Using Administrative Data

Publicly available alternative Population & Housing Statistics

NHS Digital: publish monthly statistics on numbers registered by GP Practice.  Quarterly publications in January, April, July and October will include Lower Layer Super Output Area (LSOA) populations and a topic of interest.  There is now an additional query hub These numbers tend to overestimate the resident population.

Latest Numbers of GP Patients by LSOA in England as at 01/07/2020.

Elector Statistics – Electoral Roll is published annually in December by Local Authorities and ONS then publish figures for all UK by Local Authority and parliamentary Constituency in late Spring. Note that the rolls have significant (around 15%) undercount compared to Population Estimates. (See Report by the Electoral Commission). 

December 2019 Data   December 2018 data

Child Benefit Statistics: HMRC publish numbers registered for Child Benefit by Single Year of Age by Local Authority along with family size information and some data at LSOA level.


The Government Statistical Service (GSS) published this sheet of useful links in a recent consultation on Housing Statistics – location currently unknown. UK-Housing-and-Planning-Statistics May 2019

VOA: Council Tax Statistics: The Valuation Office now publish Council Tax bands by LSOA which can act as a useful proxy for numbers of dwellings. This data is available for 31 March, 2019: VOA Data by LSOA and VOA Data for Local Authorities

Dwelling Stock April 2019 Estimates
Vacant Dwellings April 2019 Estimates
Dweelings by Tenure April 2019 Estimates

Neither MHCLG nor ONS produce estimates of Household numbers BUT ONS have just published Household Estimates for UK Local Authorities, 2012-2018 using Annual Population Survey Data.

Dwelling Stock Estimates by Tenure Welsh Local Authorities April 2019
Household Estimates by Type – Welsh Local Authorities Mid 2018

NRS Scotland
Dwellings and Household Estimates, 2019 
Dwellings, Household & Vacant Estimates  – Local Authorities Mid 2018
Sub-national Dwelling Stock by Tenure Mid 2018 
Data Zones Council Tax Information 2018

Internet Access – with the 2021 Census being the first “on-line” census, with the aim of getting as many people as possible to fill in their forms on-line, these figures are of great interest to all Census users. Data for 2020 here

Local Authority held data sources: 
With the move away from the traditional Census (2021 will probably be the last full census) ONS and Local Authorities are going to have to rely more on centrally and locally held Administrative data sources to update their demographic information.  ONS already use GP Patient Register and HESA data to work out migration moves within the UK  and for the 2011 Census it used data supplied by Local Authorities, such as Council Tax, School Pupils and Electoral registers to help quality assure the results i.e. did they tie in with each other.

My experience covers GP Patient Registers, Electoral Registers, Council Tax records, School Pupil Census (PLASC), Local Land & Property Gazetteer, Student Address data from FE Colleges and Universities. All these data were matched with current address files (AddressPoint / AddressBase) that then allows these data sources to be aggregated for any area of interest – new wards, community areas, 1 mile radius etc and will help build up a demographic snapshot of the area which may be difficult using ONS data.  Why not ask your colleagues for access to these valuable data sources?

For advice on any aspect,  such as what information is available on which data sources, or how to use the data you find, or match your records then please email