Futures Forum: The future of health services and how they will affect Sidmouth: meeting at Stowford Rise Community Centre.... Tuesday 11th November
It's very much a question of lack of affordable housing - which means a lack of young families:
Futures Forum: Identifying housing 'need' in the West Country.................. ..... "Broken Market, Broken Dreams"
This is from today's Financial Times:
Last updated: October 28, 2014 6:40 pm
English and Welsh seaside residents older and sicker
English and Welsh seaside residents older and sicker - FT.com
And this is from today's Daily Mail:
Seaside towns struggling to cope with ageing population as figures show more than a third in some areas are over 65
- 6.2million people live in a coastal community in England and Wales
- In some areas more than a third are over 65, including half in Southwold
- 8 out of the 10 areas with the highest average age are by the sea
- MPs warn coastal areas need more investment to secure regeneration
- Too many retirement blocks and not enough homes for working people
More than a third of people in some of the country’s best-loved seaside resorts are over-65, leaving them struggling to survive without an influx of young people, new figures revealed today.
In one town, Southwold in Suffolk, half of people are now retired, according to a new study by the Office for National Statistics.
MPs warned that without urgent investment in the 270 coastal communities in England and Wales some areas will struggle to retain the working age families needed to fuel the economies of towns dominated by old people’s homes.
The new census of coastal communities shows that on average 20 per cent of people living in them are aged 65 or over, compared to 16 per nationwide.
However, a detailed breakdown reveals that in places like Milford on Sea in Hampshire, Fairlight in East Sussex, Sidmouth in Devon and Charmouth in Dorset the figure is more than 40 per cent and it is over 30 per cenrt in Bexhill in East Sussex and Christchurch in Dorset.
The ONS said the data confirms the widely-held perception that ‘older people are more likely to live by the coast’.
‘In general, the smaller the coastal community the higher the share of population aged 65 or over, with the share rising from a 17 per cent average among the large coastal communities to a 25 per cent average among the small coastal communities.’
It also means there are fewer children: just 17 per cent in coastal towns are aged 0-15, compared to 19 per cent for England and Wales overall.
It means that 8 out of the 10 areas with the highest average age in the whole country are by the sea.
In 2011, some 6.2million people lived in a coastal communities, including 2.2 million who lived within the 12 largest. It means that 11 per cent of people live by the sea.
While people choose to move to the seaside in their retirement, it can mean areas struggle to cope with increased demand on health and social care services.
Some 7 per cent of people in coastal areas have a long-term health problem that means day to day activities were ‘limited a lot’, compared to 5.7 per cent of people nationwide.
Torbay MP Adrian Sanders, a member of the all-party group for coastal communities, said
‘Clearly there are increased social costs of being migratory places for retired people. At the moment when they move into an area they are at the top of their earnings capacity, but then they dip into savings.’
He warned that many areas councils have agreed large numbers of developments for gated retirement blocks and old people’s homes.
‘We need to retain more of the working age, skilled people. A lot of it comes down to the housing policy. If you don’t build in order to secure enough affordable housing for working age people on low wages the only people who will invest will be the likes of McCarthy and Stone.
‘With the best will in the world pensioners aren’t the kind of people who are going to be going out and buying new furniture and renovating their properties. It is younger, working-age people who go out and spend money on those things.
He said a major problem was that people pay into council tax funds where they spend their working lives, but when they move to the seaside it is the coastal councils who have to pick up the social care bill.
He warned that the money given to coastal towns was ‘miniscule’ compared to other regional growth funding.
Mr Sanders insisted that there are also positives to having more retired people, who are ‘really helpful at running community groups and charities’ and acting as councillors or school governors. ‘They help to build stronger communities,’ he added.
The ONS data also shows how coastal communities differ from the rest of the country.
More than 95 per cent of people living by the coast are white, compared to 86 per cent in England and Wales.
Over half the coastal communities had in excess of 98 per cent of population with white ethnicity, the ONS said.
People are more likely to live in rented homes at the seaside. Some 19 per cent of families are in rented properties, compared to 15 per cent across the country.
There are also more empty homes. The census in 2011 found 1.1 million houses which were not occupied by usual residents.
These include holiday homes or apartments and properties with short-term residents.
In England and Wales in 2011, 4.4 per cent of household spaces were unoccupied by usual residents.
The average was the same for large coastal communities, slightly higher (5.5 per cent) for medium sized coastal communities but higher (10.5 per cent) in small coastal communities.
Overall, across all coastal communities in this report the average was 6.1 per cent.
In Southwold in Suffolk and Salcombe in Devon, half of homes were not lived in full-time.
Seaside towns struggling to cope with ageing population as figures show more than a third in some areas are over 65 | Daily Mail Online
The Helpage Charity Shows How Fast World'S Population Is Ageing - YouTube