A tutorial on creating thematic maps from 2011 Census data

2011Census-logoLearn how to select 2011 Census small area data and create printable thematic maps for Bradford.

One of the easiest ways to explore the 2011 Census results is mapping small areas, making use of free online tools.


Let’s say you want to visualise Ethnic Groups in Bradford by creating a map of where people reside. 2011 Census data is hosted by Nomis and can be accessed by clicking here.

With the 2011 Census data front page open, choose Key Statistics followed by the KS201EW Ethnic Group table. Table information is provided, with a link to a full description. You want to Explore the data, so click on the Wizard Query.

You now have a 5-step process to complete, starting with geography selection.


STEP 1 The small area you will use is Lower layer Super Output Areas. Select ‘some’ from the drop-down box then find Bradford from the next drop-down and click ‘tick all’, then Next.

STEP 2 is selecting ethnic groups. Uncheck ‘All usual residents’ and check only broad ethnic groups, then click Next.

STEP 3 is percent selection, which can be skipped. Click Next.

nomis_tutorial-img-7STEP 4 is choosing the format. Check ‘Map’ and click Finish.

STEP 5 is the download. Click ‘View map’ which opens a new window.


Here you can select which Ethnic Group to visualise and customise your map size or include a background (as above), with a printable version if needed.


2011 Census OAC Preliminary Mapping

2011Census-logoWe have produced a thematic map of Bradford for the preliminary 2011 England and Wales Output Area Classification.

The Output Area Classification (OAC) distills key results from the Census for the whole of the UK to indicate the character of local areas. It profiles populations, structures other data, and helps target resources.

To open the preliminary results map please click here.

Map legend code names

1 – Rural Residents
2 – Cosmopolitans
3 – Ethnic Mix
4 – Blue Collar Neighbourhoods
5 – Multicultural Metropolitans
6 – Suburbanites
7 – Hard-Pressed Households
8 – Urbanites

Pen Portraits for these ‘supergroups’ are available here.

2011 Census Output Area Classification

obs-blog-2011oacA new 2011 UK Output Area Classification (OAC) is being produced through a collaborative project between the Office for National Statistics and University College London.  ONS/UCL are currently seeking users’ views on this work via a short questionnaire available by clicking here.

In summary:

  • updates the previous 2001 OAC;
  • is freely available;
  • indicates the character of small areas;
  • contains a three-tiered hierarchical classification of 8 Supergroups, 24 Groups and 67 Subgroups;
  • can be used for area profiling, structuring data and targeting resources.

Ethnic inequalities in labour market participation?

ethnicity-blog-img-1Using recently published 2011 Census data the Centre on Dynamics of Ethnicity has analysed ethnic differences in labour market participation for men and women aged 25 to 49 in England and Wales.

Summary findings

  • The White ethnic groups(with the marked exception of the Gypsy or Irish Traveller group) were in a more advantaged position in the labour market compared with other ethnic groups.
  • This advantage is apparent from rates of economic activity and unemployment. For economic activity, only Indian men and Black Caribbean women had a similar rate to the White ethnic groups. For unemployment, Pakistani men had rates that were one and a half times the rate for White British men, and Black Caribbean men had rates almost three times as high. Pakistani women’s unemployment rate was more than three times White British women’s, and for Black Caribbean women, unemployment was more than twice White British women’s.

  • Women had lower rates of economic activity than men in all ethnic groups. However, this difference was greatest for Bangladeshi (87% for men vs. 40% for women), Pakistani (88% vs. 43%), Arab (69% vs. 40%) and White Gypsy or Irish Traveller (67% vs. 41%) groups.
  • The White Gypsy or Irish Traveller group was particularly disadvantaged. Both men and women had very low rates of economic activity (67% for men and 41% for women) and very high rates of unemployment (16% for men and 19% for women).
  • Men and women in each of the Black and Mixed Black ethnic groups, except for Black Caribbean women, had high rates of unemployment.
  • One third of Bangladeshi economically active men were in part-time work, a surprisingly high rate that was equivalent to that for Bangladeshi women.

To open the full briefing please click here.

2011 Census Index of Tables and Topics

2011Census-logoAn on-line index of topics and tables is now available via the ONS website. This has been  designed to help users to locate the information they are looking for. Whether you know  the table number you are looking for or just want to search by topic, this tool will provide  information as to which website the tables are resident and to what geographies the data is  available for. Available for use on Excel 2007 and above, this tool will be updated as further tables are released.

You can download this tool by clicking here.

Census 2011 Profiles

Bradford Observatory have produced a standard Census 2011 Profile using key  indicators reported by Census 2011. All profiles can be downloaded or saved as a PDF document straight from Bradford Observatory. All Census 2011  profiles are standardardised and have District and West Yorkshire comparators. They are available at a number of key standard geographies from  Bradford Observatory. Click on the below links to view

Census 2011 Profile for Lower super Output Area

Census 2011 Profile for Local Authority (Bradford District)

Census 2011 Profile for Wards

Census 2011 Profile for Area Committees

Census 2011 Profile for Lower Super Output Areas 2011 (New LSOAs)