Welcome to the

Welcome to the

Leicestershire Census Project

Known as FreeCEN

FreeCen's aim is to provide a free-to-view on-line searchable database of the census returns for the whole country. This site shows the progress for Leicestershire

Volunteers from all over the world are transcribing the census from Fiche and CD, freely loaned by the LDS, into a specially written database.  Without the invaluable support of volunteers this project would not exist.

The Project makes use of specially developed software modules for data entry, checking, validation and database upload, under the global name of UK-CENS, and the software is described on the parent project's page at FreeCEN.

For the 1891 Project volunteers need a computer with spreadsheet software and access to a microfiche reader, for the 1841, 1861 and 1871 Project volunteers need a computer with CD drive, spreadsheet and Acrobat Reader software (1861) or jpg viewer for 1871. 

Microfiche, CD, instructions and lots of advice will be supplied by the organisers. There are also dedicated mailing lists to ask questions and to receive advice about changes or upgrades to the software.

 If you want to get involved please email me for details.

Here’s what to do:

1. Locate your parish of research or interest

1841 1851
1861 1871
1881 1891

2. Send your NAME, ADDRESS, and Email address to me with the Piece and Census you are volunteering to transcribe. i.e RG9 2267, RG12 2267.  If the Piece you are interested in has already been allocated, maybe you would like to become a checker for that piece - ask me for more details.

I will acknowledge your email, provide any further details and then arrange postage of  the relevant Microfiche/CD and 'getting started' instructions.

There are three phases.

In the first, volunteers transcribe the returns and load the data into the software.

In the second phase the transcriptions will be checked against the microfiche/CD using a separate piece of software.

The third phase is the validation of the transcriptions ready for uploading to the on-line database.

The software for both phases is designed to make the tasks as easy as possible. Returns from counties across England, Wales and Scotland are available on-line - see the main FreeCen Project page for details. These will be transferred to the FreeCen database as soon as they have gone through all stages.

These projects are designed to help not just ourselves and others who are researching Leicestershire family history, but to also build a valuable resource that will help future family historians. It is also designed to appeal to all online family historians.

If you are online you can participate from wherever you are!

click here to view useful information

Click here to go to the main FreeCen page

Click here to go to the Rootsweb homepage

Click here to visit my personal Family History Page


  1. Please remember to always save your work every time you use INCENS or SSCENS using the Grandfather, Father, Son method
  2. See the article on how to deal with columns 11, 12, 13 and 14. (Occupation, Employer,Employed and unemployed)
  3. Users of Windows XP must use the Spreadsheet method due to incompatibilities with INCens Software
  4. New transcribers using SSCens can now either check their work themselves using csvchk (available from the main FreeCen site) or email their first few pages of work to me for checking.
  5. Transcribers already well established using SSCens can also download the csvchk software and check their own work.
  6. A point to note for Mac users - csvchk is an exe file so unless you have PC emulation software on your machines I will have to check your work for you.
  7. Don't forget the Hints and Information pages - these contain other snippets of useful information