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Statistics: Constituencies

Volume 458: debated on Wednesday 14 March 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether his Department has issued guidance to other Government departments on the production of statistics for new parliamentary constituencies. (126442)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 14 March 2007:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question to any guidance has been issued to other government departments on the production of statistics for new parliamentary constituencies. (126442)

Firstly please can I refer you to the answer that Colin Mowl gave on my behalf to a closely related question from Roger Godsiff MP (119197) last month (Hansard ref: 19 February 2007, column 233W).

Furthermore there is a draft National Statistics Geography Policy that wherever possible stable geographies should be used as the building blocks for National Statistics. Wherever possible ‘exact’ outputs should be produced and published first for these core geographies. Outputs for other areas, including parliamentary constituencies, will continue to be released as long as they are required. These will be created either from the source data or via best fitting or estimation from the core units. Hence in principle it should be possible to provide the range of statistics that are currently available for existing parliamentary constituencies.

A boundary commission report detailing the proposed new parliamentary constituencies was laid before parliament on 26 February 2007. There has not yet been a date set for the debates in the House of Commons and House of Lords to discuss and vote on these proposals.

When we know the details of the new constituencies the ONS and other government departments will start producing data for them as resources and work programmes allow.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will provide the key statistics for the proposed parliamentary constituencies of (a) Ealing Central and Acton and (b) Hammersmith Borough from the 2001 census data. (126443)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 14 March 2007:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking if we will provide key statistics for the proposed parliamentary constituencies of (a) Baling Central and Acton and (b) Hammersmith Borough from the 2001 Census data. (126443)

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is currently reviewing the most appropriate manner in which 2001 Census data could be provided for revised constituencies for the UK Parliament in both England and Wales once the boundaries for England are finalised.

The amount of data produced from the 2001 Census for the revised constituencies, and the timing of its release, will depend on available resources and the priority of other Census outputs.