Annotation and footnotes

Using annotations

Chart annotations can be very useful to highlight main messages in your data. They must be concise and relevant. Place annotations on the chart as close as possible to the data points of interest.

Using footnotes

Avoid chart footnotes where possible. If extra information is needed:

  • annotate the chart
  • include the information in the statistical commentary accompanying the chart
  • add a footnote to the chart title

Example of how to use annotations and footnotes in a chart

Number of divorces1
England and Wales, 1910 to 2011

Footnotes (include at end of accompanying copy text)
1 Divorce figures include both decree absolutes and decrees of nullity

We are constantly improving based on research and best practice. Any significant changes to our guidance are available on the Updates page.