Britain

Mortality rate in Blackpool worse than parts of Romania

Blackpool, Manchester and Hull have a higher percentage of deaths each year than parts of Turkey, Slovakia and Romania according to the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) North.

In its State of the North 2019 report, the think tank says centralisation of power and a lack of regional independence, combined with low levels of local government spending has left the UK more socially divided than comparable nations like France or Germany in terms of health, jobs, disposable income and productivity.

It found that in Kensington and Chelsea and Hammersmith and Fulham, disposable income per person is £48,000 higher than in areas such as, Nottingham and Leicester.

The report added that while productivity in London and the South East was among the highest in the developed world, parts of Northern Ireland, Wales and the north of England are less productive than parts of Poland, Hungary and Romania.

It says only Romania and South Korea are more socially divided.

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The report's authors identify a lack of money as a root cause, with local government spending on economic affairs half of what is available regionally in France and Germany. They say centralisation is making the situation worse with central government taking 95p of every £1 raised in tax, compared to 69p in Germany.

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Report author and senior research fellow at IPPR North, Luke Raikes, said: "It is no surprise that people across the country feel so disempowered.

"Both political and economic power are hoarded by a handful of people in London and the South East, and this has damaged all parts of the country, from Newcastle to Newham."

He said: "AlRead More – Source