• by Kevin Murphy

Britain: Helping Deprived Neighbourhoods

As Britains need for more homes and apartments continues the issue of neighbourhoods with their needs continue to increase as well. Officials from The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) ranked a total of 32,844 neighbourhoods with a review of income levels, employment, education, health, crime and housing in a review by BBC.

The results have shown that the the most deprived location being the seaside village of Jaywick, Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, the third time in a row since 2010. The village received a visit by the United Nations special rapporteur while examining extreme poverty in Britain.

Jaywick resident Dan Casey, 80 years old, told the BBC about his community being on the list for third time:

"Something has to change or we will be here again in another few years".

"It needs investment to bring in jobs."

The area has 57% on benefits from 'income deprivation' because of their very limited financial situation.

"The biggest problem here is too many people are relying on benefits."

"We've still got a stunning coastline."

"It's something we have to offer that a lot of other places don't. I was walking here recently, looking outand thinking it's gorgeous."I wouldn't want to live anywhere else.I love my home and I love the people."

Blackpool has the highest number of deprived neighbourhoods with eight out of 10. As a result the group Blackpool Pride of Place Partnership comprised of local businesses is working to resolve the resort city's problems saying "there are no quick fixes."

Paul Smith of the local group says:

"We have set out a vision for Blackpool in 2030 that seeks to resolve the town's housing problems, educational outcomes and health challenges with long-term sustainable change."

"While we welcome funding such as the recently announced Stronger Towns Fund or Future High Streets Fund, what Blackpool really needs is a long-term strategic relationship with central government to solve the unique problems that have led to deprivation on this scale."

The highest proportion of deprived neighbourhoods are in the north with Middlesbrough, Knowsley, Hull, Liverpool and Manchester.

Andy Preston the Middlesbrough mayor says:

"The challenges we face are really big and difficult to overcome, but we have big plans that will deliver real progress."

"Within the next three weeks we will be announcing game-changing developments

that will help to deliver the economic growth that has been missing for decades."

For the boroughs in the capital city of London decreases in highly deprived neighbourhoods can be found in Tower Hamlets and Westminster. Lancaster Gate in Westminster had the highest improvement since the last survey in 2015. Its new ranking is 26,491 out of 32,844 neighbourhoods.

The growing borough of Wandsworth in south London for example did not have any highly deprived locations but rather had eight areas in the borough that were ranked at grade 2.

The Wandsworth Times reports that the areas were:

"Latchmere ward, the eastern edge of Furzedown ward, the western edge of Roehampton and Putney Heath and the northern edge of Tooting."

"There were also nine areas graded 10, which are in the least deprived 10 per cent of areas in the country, showing a stark contrast across the borough."

"The south-western edge of Southfields ward was ranked the least deprived area in the borough, encompassing Engadine Street, Clonmore Street, Heythrop Street and Elsenham Street.

"The northern tip of Balham and the middle of Northcote Ward were also amongst the least deprived."

A spokesman for the Wandsworth Council tells the Wandsworth Times recently:

“The council launched its Aspiration Project in 2013, which is particularly targeted on deprived wards. This includes regeneration projects, creating more homes, health schemes and the council’s Work Match job brokerage. In order to further build upon this work, the council has signed the Social Mobility Pledge."

“Tackling deprivation and inequality has subsequently been woven into all areas of council work. We have clearly set out Equality Objectives, which set targets such as reducing the gap between disadvantaged pupils and their peers and reducing the gap between employment rates in deprived and other wards. Success against these targets is regularly measured and scrutinised."

“In addition we have recently launched a new partnership approach to health and social care with our NHS and voluntary sector partners, the Wandsworth Health and Care Plan, which looks at health inequality and how it can be overcome.”

Other locations that had strong improvements were Kingsway in Gloucester, the Whitehall Road area of Leeds and Liverpool city centre.

Chiltern Hills near Amersham, Buckinghamshire was ranked as the least deprived area.

The BBC quoted a government spokesman as saying:

"The government is committed to levelling across the country and with unemployment levels continuing to fall and wages rising at their fastest in over a decade, we're committed to supporting families with their cost of living.

"We're providing more support to the most deprived authorities, which now have a spending power 16% higher per home than the least deprived."

MHCLG says their study shows:

"Concentrations of deprivation in large urban conurbations, areas that have historically had large heavy industry manufacturing and/or mining sectors (such as Birmingham, Nottingham, Hartlepool), coastal towns (such as Blackpool or Hastings), and parts of east London".

"There are also pockets of deprivation surrounded by less deprived places in every

region of England."

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