North-South divide too simplistic, says Blair
Monday 06 December 1999
Half of London's boroughs are among the 50 most deprived local authorities, the report says. And while the home counties largely escape the worst social conditions the headline figures hide great disparities within all regions.
During a two-day visit, Mr Blair will meet representatives from communities in the North-west and will go on a walkabout in Manchester's newly rebuilt city centre. His report, Sharing the Nation's Prosperity, is expected to help guide Government policy on tackling deprivation. "I know there is still too much poverty, too much under-achievement," he said.
The report shows that of the worst 50 districts, 16 are in London, eight in the North-east, 11 in the North-west, six in Yorkshire and Humberside, six in the West Midlands and three in the East Midlands.
The most deprived local authority in England is Liverpool, followed by Newham, Manchester, Hackney and then Birmingham. Within those regions, the picture is mixed.
For example, Leeds is now one of Europe's more affluent cities, with per capita income 9 per cent above the EU average. South Yorkshire has fared much worse, with barely 75 per cent of the average.
In the South-east, unemployment ranges from 0.8 per cent in Winchester to 8.6 per cent in Thanet. In Hackney, more than one person in five draws Income Support while in Wokingham, Berkshire, the figure is just one in 30.
Some of the worst unemployment is on the south coast, in places such as Plymouth, Dover and Southend.
Mr Blair will cite the report in arguing that his Government is enhancing living standards around the country, not just in affluent areas. The national minimum wage, for example, has had the biggest impact in the South-west, in terms of the proportion of employees who have benefited.
But the Shadow Chancellor, Francis Maude, said the national minimum wage and high petrol and diesel taxes had deprived parts of Britain furthest away from markets in the South-east and Europe of competitive advantage.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
£7 - £9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: Are you outgoing? Do you want to work in...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity has arisen for a...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We have an excellent role for a...