Letter: Flaws in Kendal, dreams in Thanet

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Sir: Graham Ingham in his article 'How to turn Thanet into Kendal' (1 August) bases his proposition about the relative economic success of Kendal on a superficial reading of statistics and anecdotal evidence. He ignores the economic factors which have led to the perceived low level of unemployment.

Kendal faces the problem of many rural areas in that the local working class cannot afford to buy property in the town and council housing is not widely available. They are forced by these economic factors to live in the cheaper towns of north Lancashire, and often commute to Kendal for the lower-paid jobs. Unemployment and other social indicators are therefore transferred to these towns.

Properties in Kendal are purchased as second homes, retirement homes and by daily commuters to the Lancashire and Greater Manchester conurbations. The M6 motorway provides superb facilities, for commuters as well as tourists, that would put to shame many links in the South.

Kendal is not a blueprint to the chimera of full employment. It merely shows an effect of pricing the problem out of the area.

Yours sincerely,


Newcastle upon Tyne

2nd August