Michelle Obama is visiting Tower Hamlets. Here's what she needs to know about the borough

Tower Halmets is a borough of extreme wealth and poverty

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US First Lady Michelle Obama is visiting Tower Hamlets to promote education for young women. Here’s what she should know about the borough.



London is Europe's largest financial centre by a long way, out-pacing Zurich and Frankfurt.

In London, Canary Wharf is now top dog, having overtaken the City of London in 2012 as the largest financial centre.

Canary Wharf is a part of Tower Hamlets, carved out as a special economic zone by Margaret Thatcher's industry minister Michael Heseltine in the 1980s.


All this financial activity means that Tower Hamlets has a bigger economy than Jersey or Monaco, according to the borough's 2013 Fairness Commission report.


Not everyone benefits from this huge wealth. Tower Hamlets is one of the most deprived boroughs in the UK with a child poverty rate far higher than the rest of London and the UK at large.



Much of the money earned in Tower Hamlets leaves every night on the Jubilee Line of the London Underground, which carries commuters out of Canary Wharf.