With the exception of 2001, these data have been created for Vision of Britain by re-districting statistics originally reported for other units. We have also had to deal with variations in the categories and classifications used in statistical reporting over the years.
- 1909: The unemployment rates combine data from the Amalgamated Society of Engineers (ASE) and the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners (ASC&J), using the Monthly Reports of the two trade unions for January and for July 1909. The raw data concern individual union branches. Each has been assigned to a modern local authority using grid references based on the branch's name and sometimes the detailed addresses given in the unions' publications. The unemployed were defined as all on 'Donation Benefit', in the ASE deducting those on Contingent and Full Wages benefits which were forms of strike pay. Rates were calculated by dividing the number unemployed by the eligible membership. In the ASE, this excluded apprentices, and in the ASC&J it excluded those on Superannuation benefit. The unemployment rates reported are averages of January and July rates calculated for each modern authority area. Only areas where the reporting membership was at least 50 in both months are included.
- 1931: The original sources are tables 16 'Occupations of Males and Females aged 14 years and over', for large towns, and table 17 'Occupations (Condensed List) of Males and Females aged 14 years', for small towns and Rural Districts, in Census, 1931: Classification of Occupations (London: HMSO, 1934). The unemployment rate is the number out of work in all classes as a percentage of all occupied, and the activity rate is the total occupied as a percentage of the total population; in all cases, the data concern persons aged 14 and over.
- 1951: The original sources are table 20, 'Selected Occupations with Status Aggregates', for large towns, and table 21, 'Selected Occupations with Status Aggregates - abridged analysis', for smaller towns and Rural Districts, in Census 1951 England and Wales: Occupation Tables (London: HMSO, 1956). The unemployment rate is the number out of work as a percentage of all occupied, and the activity rate is the total occupied as a percentage of the total population; in all cases, the data concern persons aged 15 and over.
- 1971: All data are computed from the 1971 Small Area Statistics, via the Linking Censuses through Time system. Numbers 'seeking work came from tables 6, for persons not in private households, and 7, for those in private households. Numbers economically active came from table 5. These data were from the 100% population statistics and were limited to persons aged 15 and over. The equivalent population total was computed by combining data from tables 2, 4 and 20. The unemployment rate is numbers seeking work as a percentage of those economically active, and the activity rate is the number economically active as a percentage of total population.
- 1981: All data are taken from table 5, covering residents aged 16 and over, in the 100% population tables of the 1981 Small Area Statistics, via the Linking Censuses through Time system. This lists the total number of each sex, the number economically active and the number seeking work.
- 1991: All data are taken from table 8, 'Economic Position: Residents aged 16 and over', in the 100% population tables of the 1991 Small Area Statistics, via the Linking Censuses through Time system. This lists the total number of residents 16 and over of each sex, the number economically active and the number seeking work; we include those on government schemes with the unemployed, and use the version of the LCT data which are adjusted to allow for 1991 undercount.
- 2001: The data are taken from table KS09 'Economic Activity: Census 2001, Key Statistics for local Authorities', combining data from KS09b for males aged 16-74 in employment and KS09c for females. These cover all persons aged 16 to 74. We defined economically active as the total of full-time employees, part-time employees, self-employed and unemployed, which excludes full-time students.