Research reveals most urgent issues facing residents

Improving transport is the most urgent issue in Gordon, according to a survey.

Thursday, 20th May 2021, 12:00 am
More than a fifth of residents believe transport services need to be improved.

It comes as the UK Government is set to outline its plan to 'level up' the country, though anti-poverty charity the Joseph Rowntree Foundation said it must improve on its "piecemeal" attempts so far.

A survey by the think tank Demos asked 20,000 adults in parliamentary constituencies across Great Britain to choose which one of nine issues most urgently needs improving in their local area.

In Gordon, 21 per cent of residents chose good transport services.

This was followed by good local shops (19 per cent), and premises to support local jobs (13 per cent).

The most pressing issue across Britain was having good shops, followed by good transport and jobs.

Demos said prioritising retailers was particularly prevalent in more built-up areas, while rural communities were more likely to see a lack of quality transport as a problem.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised a levelling-up White Paper in the recent Queen's Speech – to be unveiled later this year – saying it would "turbocharge" economic recovery nationwide.

But the JRF said the Government has produced just "a series of piecemeal individual policies" so far and called on the legislation to address the long-term challenges facing parts of the UK.

The survey also asked people how happy they are with what is currently on offer in their area.

In Gordon, an estimated 23 per cent of residents think that the provision of facilities they consider most important is nearer to 'bad' than 'good'. This is compared to the national average of 25 per cent.

The Centre for Cities said the main challenge facing many urban areas is the comparatively low education levels among the workforce, meaning well-paid jobs are scarce and wages lower.

A Skills and Post-16 Education Bill – new legislation aimed at reforming education for older teenagers and adults – was also announced in the Queen's Speech.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said the Levelling Up Fund will regenerate high streets, upgrade local transport and invest in cultural assets.