1. Main facts and figures

  • overall, in 2017/18, 72.8% of people aged 16 years and over said they had visited a heritage site (including historic towns, buildings and gardens) in the last year
  • between 2012/13 and 2017/18, the percentage of people who had visited a heritage site remained relatively stable, at between 72.5% and 74.2%
  • people from the Black, Asian and Other ethnic groups were less likely to have visited a heritage site (at 38.6%, 54.4% and 56.6% respectively) than White people (at 76.0%)
Things you need to know

These figures are estimates based on responses to the Taking Part Survey. The Taking Part survey is a sample survey. It collects information from a random sample of the population and uses it to reach generalised findings about the total population.

Unless stated otherwise, the commentary for this data includes only reliable findings (sometimes described as ‘statistically significant’). Findings are statistically significant when we can be confident that they can be repeated, and are reflective of the total population rather than just the survey sample.

Specifically, the statistical tests used mean we can be confident that if we carried out the same survey on different random samples of the population, 19 times out of 20 we would get similar findings.

As with all surveys, the estimates from the Taking Part survey are subject to a degree of uncertainty as they are based on a sample of the population. The degree of uncertainty is greater when the number of respondents is small, so it will be highest for ethnic minority groups.

What the data measures

This data measures the percentage of people aged 16 years and over in England who had visited a heritage site in the year before taking the survey.

Heritage sites include:

  • a city or town with historic character
  • an historic, secular building open to the public
  • an historic park, garden or landscape open to the public
  • a monument like a castle, fort or ruin
  • a site of archaeological interest

Percentages are calculated using the total number of survey respondents. Results are adjusted to make them representative of the population as a whole.

The ethnic categories used in this data

Respondents were asked to indicate their ethnicity from a choice of 18 categories.

For this data, the number of people surveyed was too small to draw any firm conclusions about these specific ethnic categories. Therefore, the data here is broken down into the following 5 broad groups:

  • Asian
  • Black
  • Mixed
  • White
  • Other

2. By ethnicity

Percentage of people aged 16 years and over who visited a heritage site in the past year, by ethnicity
Ethnicity % Number of respondents
All 72.8 7,715
Asian 54.4 397
Black 38.6 203
Mixed 74.6 144
White 76.0 6,854
Other 56.6 79

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • overall in 2017/18, 72.8% of people aged 16 years and over in England said they had visited a heritage site in the past year
  • people from the Black, Asian, and Other ethnic groups were less likely to have visited a heritage site (at 38.6%, 54.4% and 56.6% respectively) than White people (at 76.0%)

3. By ethnicity over time

Percentage of people aged 16 years and over who visited a heritage site in the past year, by ethnicity over time
All Asian Black Mixed White Other
Time % Number of respondents % Number of respondents % Number of respondents % Number of respondents % Number of respondents % Number of respondents
2012/13 72.7 9,838 57.0 394 55.9 188 58.5 171 74.6 9,054 withheld to protect confidentiality 22
2013/14 72.5 10,355 61.5 404 50.6 203 62.9 142 74.1 9,546 65.7 49
2014/15 72.6 9,817 55.5 367 49.9 239 70.9 99 74.7 9,050 64.0 52
2015/16 73.2 10,171 60.0 434 51.8 242 60.5 119 75.4 9,312 52.2 55
2016/17 74.2 9,352 59.4 423 47.1 242 68.8 170 76.7 8,473 withheld to protect confidentiality 27
2017/18 72.8 7,715 54.4 397 38.6 202 74.6 144 76.0 6,853 56.6 79

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • between 2012/13 and 2017/18, the percentage of people aged 16 years and over who had visited a heritage site in the past year remained stable at between 72.5% and 74.2%
  • in the same period, the percentage of Black people visiting heritage sites decreased from 55.9% to 38.6%, while the figure for people with Mixed ethnicity increased from 58.5% to 74.6%
  • in the same period, the percentage of White people visiting heritage sites increased from 74.6% to 76.0%

4. Methodology

The Taking Part survey measures cultural activity by people aged 16 years and over, as well as children aged 5 to 10 years and 11 to 15 years. Respondents must be living in private households in England, but the cultural activity can have taken place anywhere.

The sample for the Taking Part survey is chosen by first randomly selecting households from the Postcode Address File.

An interviewer visits these addresses and, if contact is made, records details of all individuals living at each address. One adult, and where applicable one child aged 5 to 10 and one aged 11 to 15, is then selected to participate in the survey.

The figures presented here only apply to people aged 16 years and over.

Weighting:

Weighting is used to adjust the results of a survey to make them representative of the population and improve their accuracy.

For example, a survey which contains 25% women and 75% men will not accurately reflect the views of the general population, which we know has an even 50/50 split. Statisticians rebalance or ‘weight’ the survey results to more accurately represent the general population. This helps to make them more reliable.

Survey weights are usually applied to make sure the survey sample has broadly the same gender, age, ethnic and geographic make up as the general population.

The data in the Taking Part sample is weighted to make sure it is representative of the population in England. The data is weighted to:

  • compensate for unequal probabilities of selection
  • adjust for non-responses

Weighting is based on mid-year population estimates from the Office for National Statistics.

Confidence intervals:

You can see confidence intervals for each ethnic group if you download the data.

In 2017/18, 72.8% of people aged 16 years or over had visited a heritage site. This is a reliable estimate of the percentage of people in England who took visited a heritage site in that period. But because the Taking Part Survey is based on a random sample, it’s impossible to be 100% certain of the true percentage.

It’s 95% certain, however, that somewhere between 71.1% and 74.5% of all people aged 16 years and over in England visited a heritage site. In statistical terms, this is a 95% confidence interval. This means that if 100 random samples were taken, then 95 times out of 100 the estimate would fall between the upper and lower confidence interval. But 5 times out of 100 it would fall outside this range.

For 2017/18, the Other ethnic group had 79 respondents (out of 7,715 respondents in total), so we can be less certain about the estimate for the Other ethnic group (56.6%). This greater uncertainty is expressed by a wider confidence interval, of between 43.0% and 69.3% for people from the Other ethnic group in 2017/18.

Changes over time and differences between groups are only reported on where they are statistically significant at the 95% level. This means that we can be confident that the differences seen in our sampled respondents are reflective of the population. The statistical tests used mean we can be confident that if we carried out the same survey on different random samples of the population, 95 times out of 100 we would get similar findings.

Rounding

Percentages are given to the nearest whole number.

Quality and methodology information

Further technical information

Taking Part technical reports.

5. Data sources

Source

Type of data

Survey data

Type of statistic

National Statistics

Publisher

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Publication frequency

Twice a year

Purpose of data source

The Taking Part Survey measures people's involvement in cultural activities in England.

The data is widely used by policy officials, practitioners, academics and charities.

6. Download the data

Adults visiting heritage sites - Spreadsheet (csv) 7 KB

The file contains: Measure, Time, Ethnicity, Geography, Value, Upper bound, Lower bound, Number of respondents, Source