French Census Forms 2014

We had a flyer delivered the other day by a member of staff from the Marie about the French Census which apparently will take place between the 16th of January and the 15th February 2014.

Has anyone any experience of this? Is a form just dropped off, which you fill in on your own, like in the UK, unless they 'pick on you' or does someone come with it and ask the questions on a one to one basis?

The reason I am asking is that our grasp of French is 'minimal' to put a good face on it and if it is a form we will probably cope but if a non English speaker asking questions then we have generally had it.

All guidance and information gratefully received on this one.

Best regards Ian Woodward.

Hi, We have recently been "censured" too. He just dropped off the Form, and picked it up after a week, giving it a brief perusal first. No actual verbal questions asked, but then our French is reasonable. The questions are not too intrusive - nationality, age, etc, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, heating system, stuff like that.

Sure we will! Thanks Ian!

Age, DOB, place of birth, married, work situation, complicated as technically retired but run Gites. All general stuff, how long in France, did I own the property, mode of travel etc. More or less the same as the UK Census. Nothing about religion though but all I can say is "May the Force be with you" on that one. Have fun.

what sort of questions did he ask? trying to crib before our exam this afternoon!


Census update.

Had the visit yesterday and had no trouble as long as the man conducting the interview managed to write down the correct information in the correct boxes. If the gendarmes turn up in the middle of the night to drag me away I will have to assume my pathetic French did not translate very well.

You keep on taking the p*ss matey, I've got broad shoulders. I got your attention & maybe a few others as well. All you black squares remember:- "We may not know what you look like but we know where you live" ;-)

It takes me back to my stint on the 1971 census and the regulations about how many times an address had to be retried, three different times of day and asking neighbours when people are in and how many people live at the house. Although after 1 January 1970 when the age of majority went down to 18, the instruction was still to only interview people aged above 21! So that if we heard that only two teenagers lived at the house we legally could not collect data and then if we exhausted all of our attempts, left a slip of paper each time to say we had called and still drew a blank we still did not know whether the house was uninhabited, people working abroad (therefore not eligible), on holiday (eligible, but stupidly assuming people only went away for a maximum of a fortnight) and so on. Then people who just did not want to open the door, answer questions, be counted, hid and so on. When we reported in to our local supervisor in Cambridge talking amongst ourselves there was a lot of all of that but the supervisor (salaried civil servant who did not go out collecting himself, so had no idea in practice) was not having it. It was a citizen's duty to do the census. I remember a bright spark asking about 'foreigners' because they were not citizens and him being told they had to obey the law of the land they were in and that was that. On the question of people who did not speak or understand English there was no answer that I remember. The civil servant was in Lalaland.

If all of that BS goes on in the French census, plus time slots, plus ?minutes/hours given the way 'punctual' and 'agreed time' sort of things are understood... Chaos springs to mind with dodgers being simply an occasional incidental. Also, as a last thought, do they also make up data based on the sketchy details from neighbours that used (probably still could/does) to happen in the UK?

Vic peruses the photographs of the SFN members savvy enough to import a photo so far. lol

I'm wondering whether they'll narrow it down a bit closer to the time - what I mean is that at the moment all we know is that someone will turn up at any time on any day between 16/1 and 15/2 - worse than some UK utility company appointment time slots!

Has anyone been through it before, and if so do you know whether they do narrow it down to one particular day, for example?

Strangely enough quite a lot of our neighbours go out to work - so if someone is going to turn up when they're not in that's a wasted visit and therefore an additional cost. Or is cost not a consideration in these recession-ridden days.....?

This got me wondering about the census here so of I went to the INSEE website to find that our commune has been given the wrong postcode. Makes a bit of a mockery of the whole thing really.

"Photo and all" Yeah right on. Result. The campaign continues! petit à petit l'oiseau fait son nid" :-)

No worries Vic,

Nice to have Ian onboard, photo and all :)


Sorry James . I should have said that the penny final droppedwhen I realised that the typo was the I in Ian seeming to be an l thus showing it as La (my caps) As this had been shown, uncorrected, in all Ian's posts I wrongly put 2 & 2 together, la Woodward & no photo , & assumed it was a "P" take.

I understand that a few local Brits "hid" when they saw the council reps arrive to do the census in our village. It's not at all difficult and takes virtually no time.

Unfortunately, that was actually lager, but in my defence was probably Fischer Bier from Alsace, which I got a taste for back in the early 70's whilst camping there. My thing is really Real Ale and I was in CAMRA for many years until moving here. As I am of the elderly persuasion it only cost £13.00 p.a. in subscriptions and I received £20.00 of Wetherspoon's vouchers for my trouble. Now that is a great deal in anyones eyes. Always try and pack in visits, minus vouchers unfortunately, for as many times as I can. Assorted 'Clubs', Large Breakfast, Beer and a Burger etc. every time we go back. They have a fairly new one mid week for chicken but looking at the clientele in October in Havant I think they should name it 'Widows Wednesday' as apart from me and two or three other males in the dining area we were outnumbered by about a factor of 10 by the females. Probably a good demographic for the over 60's.

Don't hear anybody arguing! ;-)

...and I'm uglier than all of you (sticks tongue out)! ;-)

Good man. Now we're on a mission to shame/convince all the other black squares to show their faces. Wanna join? You must be Ok as you drink BEER!