Census in East Sussex


From 13 July we will be reopening five libraries in East Sussex.

We are not able to offer a full library service due to the need for social distancing. We will be encouraging people to continue to use our eLibrary where they can so that we can manage customer numbers safely.

If you have any questions regarding the reopening of libraries or available services, please contact us via our eform or on the enquiries line 0345 60 80 196.

For more information on the available libraries, opening times and services visit the Libraries Reopening Plan.

Libraries offer free access to the Ancestry and Find My Past websites. They include the census of the UK population from 1841 to 1911.

Some of our libraries and the record office hold full census data for Sussex 1841 to 1911 and summary results from 1921 onwards.

Online reference library

About the census

Every 10 years since 1801 (except 1941) a national census has been carried out. People’s names were recorded from 1841, making these useful records for family history research.

Full details from census returns are made public 100 years after the census has taken place.

Full census returns

All libraries offer access to Ancestry website. Our larger libraries and the record office have copies of the full census for East Sussex.

  • UK census 1841 to 1911 online in all libraries.
  • Sussex 1841 to 1911 on microfilm or microfiche at Hastings Library and Lewes Library.
  • Eastern Sussex 1841 to 1891 on microform at the record office.
  • East and West Sussex 1901 on microform at the record office.
  • Eastbourne and surrounding area 1841 to 1901 on microfilm or microfiche at Eastbourne Library.

Census summaries

East Sussex summaries from the 1921 to 2011 census (not 1941) are available in libraries, our record office and online.