Why are workers wages in Blackpool the third lowest in UK?

Workers in Blackpool have among the lowest average salaries in the UK, HMRC data shows.

Friday, 12th April 2019, 8:39 am
Updated Friday, 12th April 2019, 8:44 am
Low wages leave thousands struggling to make ends meet

Income inequality charity the Equality Trust says the figures, which reveal a gap of more than £35,000 between the UK’s richest and poorest areas, “paint a bleak picture for our society”.

The average worker in Blackpool made £17,900 before tax in the 2016-17 financial year, HMRC figures show.

That’s the third-lowest income in the UK, where the median is £23,600.

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Low wages leave thousands struggling to make ends meet

HMRC uses the median, the middle number in a series, instead of the mean average, so the figures are not distorted by extreme highs and lows. The data does not cover people who are self-employed.

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Dr Wanda Wyporska, executive director of the Equality Trust, said: “These figures paint a bleak picture for our society, and we can see a huge divide between incomes in the north and the south [of the UK].

“These gaps are further evidence of the shockingly high level of inequality in the UK, which we know is linked to poverty, mental and physical ill-health, and lower levels of social mobility.

“This damages us all, rich and poor.”

Across the North West, workers in Copeland have the highest annual income at £26,000, while the median is £21,300.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation, a poverty and social mobility charity, urged the Government to focus on strengthening the economies of poorer areas in the UK.

Head of policy and partnerships Katie Schmuecker said: “We all want to live in a society where working hard means being able to improve life for your family, but too many working people are locked in poverty by low pay and high costs. All parts of the UK need access to the jobs and skills that provide a route out of poverty, and incomes need to match the rising costs which leave many working families struggling to decide which bills they can pay.

“Until work provides a reliable route out of poverty, too many workers will struggle to make ends meet.”