Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care


About the ONS LS

The ONS LS is stored at the Office for National Statistics and contains census and life events data, linked between five successive censuses, beginning in 1971. The sample is of people living in England and Wales who were born on one of four selected dates of birth, i.e. 4 out of 365 days of the year, so it makes up about 1% of the total population. The sample was updated at the 1981, 1991, 2001 and 2011 Censuses and in registrations of life events such as deaths, births to sample mothers, emigrations and cancer registrations. Fresh LS members enter the study through birth and immigration and existing members leave through emigration or death, however their data is retained. The LS now includes records for over 1,100,000 individuals.

Census information is also included for all people living in the same household as the LS member. However, the LS does not follow up household members in the same way from census to census.

Why was the ONS LS set up?

Find out about the origin of the LS.

What data does the ONS LS contain?

Discover which census and events data the LS contains.

What types of analysis can the ONS LS be used for?

Discover the types of analysis you can do.