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Last Updated: Friday, 4 July, 2003, 11:49 GMT 12:49 UK
New tool for homebuyers
House hunters
Information could help house hunters
The government has launched a new website which allows homebuyers to find out what kind of neighbours they will be living with.

The site gives househunters access to demographic profiles of neighbourhoods across England and Wales.

It provides information on residential districts such as their ethnic make-up and the proportion of married couples living in them.

Data on the average number of cars residents own, and the size of the local student population is also available.

The information is based on data from the 2001 census, which has been broken down into 175,000 separate neighbourhoods.

Vital statistics

The Office for National Statistics said confidentiality would be guaranteed.

In areas with few households, numbers are rounded up to prevent individuals from being identified.

What can you find out?
Resident population: age, marital status, ethnicity and religion
Health and provision of care
Economic and educational activity and qualifications
Housing and household information (including house price information from the Land Registry)
Information on crime levels (from police force recorded incidents)

Users of the website can create and manipulate tables online, and select areas for analysis by clicking on maps.

Jon McGinty, director of neighbourhood statistics and census outputs at the ONS, said: "What we have got here is 9,000 odd stories waiting to be told.

"The main message here the sheer quantity of data being released.

"A whole range of information not just from the census is available free of charge on the Internet. This is a big public service delivery commitment being made."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


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