Call for Cornish option on at next census after over 100,000 ‘write-in’ Cornish identity
A political party has called for the choice of Cornish identity to be a set option on the next census form after over 100,000 people wrote-in that they considered themselves Cornish.
In total 108,860 people wrote-in Cornish on the census form across Cornwall, Wales and England. Scotland conducted its own separate census.
But Welsh, English, British and a range of other identities could be chosen from a drop-down menu on the census form filled in last year, but Cornish was not among them. However, people could write this identity in under ‘other’.
79,938 people in Cornwall wrote in that they were Cornish-only on the 2021 census form, with a further 9,032 saying that they were Cornish and British.
Outside of Cornwall, a further 9,146 said that they were Cornish only and 1,638 that they were Cornish and British, according to ONS figures.
This means that 17% of residents in Cornwall recorded their nationality as Cornish, despite it not being a set option on the census form.
Mebyon Kernow who are campaigning for more political autonomy for the Celtic nation said that the figures justified giving Cornish its own box on the form.
Commenting on behalf of MK, Party Leader Cllr Dick Cole said: “I am heartened that 108,860 people made the conscious decision to write-in Cornish on the 2021 census – this is a powerful statement of the strength of our national identity.
“This nonetheless represents a massive undercount of Cornish people, because we were denied a tick-box by the ONS and the UK Government.
“This must strengthen our resolve to press the ONS to include a Cornish tick-box in the next census and, more immediately, to challenge all Government departments and agencies to include ‘Cornish’ as an identity option on all official forms.”
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