Uk

The Unhealthiest Town In The UK Has Been Revealed

When people are looking for a place to settle down with their kids, there are a few things they look for - good schools, nice parks, a good GP... doesn't require too much thought to work out what these might be.

The Unhealthiest Town In The UK Has Been Revealed

Meanwhile, at the other end of the scale, people generally stay away from places that resemble a post-apocalyptic landscape not dissimilar to that seen in Viggo Mortensen movie The Road. And to some people, streets dominated by fried chicken shops and bookies fit that bill.

Well, a new report has taken out the middle man and ranked 70 towns and cities in the UK, from those which had the healthiest high streets to those at the other end of the scale.

So how did they judge them? The good people at The Royal Society For Public Health created a scorecard, with businesses being given a score between 8 and -4.

Leisure centres, museums, and libraries all scored highly on this particular scale because they promote healthy living, while pubs also scored highly because of their ability to bring people together.

 

Even vape shops, the scourge of society itself, were considered to be positives for high streets because they discourage people from smoking.

However, places with high numbers of tanning salons, payday lenders, off-licences, and takeaways did not fare so well in the rankings.

And Grimbsy - you know, that place in the fish advert - has been named as the most unhealthy in the entire country, followed closely by Blackpool and Walsall. Hey, don't shoot the messenger.

Credit: Creative Commons/Wikimedia Commons
Credit: Creative Commons/Wikimedia Commons

According to the report, there was a clear difference between the poorest and the most wealthy areas of the country, with those better off having much healthier high streets. The BBC reported that the number of fast-food outlets on UK streets rose by 4,000 between 2014 and 2017, mostly in deprived areas.

However, it also showed that, since 2015, the number of payday lenders in the country's biggest towns and cities has reduced by a third.

Scottish capital Edinburgh came out top of the pile as having the healthiest high street in the UK, followed by Canterbury and Taunton.

Shirley Cramer, RSPH chief executive said: "When our time and money are converted into a loss at the bookmaker, a tan from a sunbed, a high-cost loan or a bucket of fried chicken, the High Street is enabling and supporting poor health behaviours.

"Our Health on the High Street rankings illustrate how unhealthy businesses concentrate in areas which already experience higher levels of deprivation, obesity and lower life expectancy.

Credit: © Ken Grainger (cc-by-sa/2.0)
Credit: © Ken Grainger (cc-by-sa/2.0)

"Reshaping these High Streets to be more health-promoting could serve as a tool to help redress this imbalance."

Top ten 'unhealthiest' high streets

  • Grimsby
  • Walsall
  • Blackpool
  • Stoke-on-Trent
  • Sunderland
  • Northampton
  • Bolton
  • Wolverhampton
  • Huddersfield
  • Bradford

Top ten 'healthiest' high streets

  • Edinburgh
  • Canterbury
  • Taunton
  • Shrewsbury
  • Cheltenham
  • York
  • Brighton & Hove
  • Eastbourne
  • Exeter
  • Cambridge

 

Featured Image Credit: John Lord/Flickr

Comments

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