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Caerphilly MPs “outrage” as Lansbury Park named most deprived area in Wales

Published in News at 15:02, Thursday November 27th, 2014.

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The MP for Caerphilly has spoken of his “outrage” that St James ward is the most deprived area of Wales.

Wayne David made his comments after a Welsh Government report revealed the ward, which houses the Lansbury Park estate, overtook an area in Rhyl in deprivation and poverty.

The Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation is published every three years and the latest figures show St James moving from second to first in the list, calculated mainly on income and employment.

The index also considers health, education, access to services, community safety, physical environment and housing.

Mr David said: “This is truly shocking news. Lansbury Park has suffered from a whole range of problems over the past few years.

“A recent report showed that the Westminster Government’s welfare reform cuts have hit the least well-off in the estate very hard indeed.

“Huge investment is needed in Lansbury Park to improve the facilities which are available to the community. It is therefore essential that the local authority has the resources to make this investment.

“It is vital that the ConDem Government ensure that adequate resources are released to help communities like Lansbury Park and welfare reform does not hit the least well-off.”

Data from the 2011 census showed 48% of those aged 16-24 in the ward were not employed and 16% hadn’t worked for ten years.

A spokesman for Caerphilly County Borough Council said: “The council is aware of St James ward’s ranking in the Wales Index of Multiple Deprivation.

“There is already a great deal of good work being carried out in this area to tackle poverty, with the Communities First programme, Flying Start and Families First initiatives all having an active presence in this particular community.

“The Council works alongside partner agencies to engage with the community and to provide support with these issues.

“Indeed many council houses in St James ward have been earmarked for significant investment improvements as part of our wide-scale Welsh Housing Quality Standard programme.

“The council wishes to carefully consider the findings of this report before making any further comment.”

The Twyn Carno ward is ranked sixth in the index, an improvement from third in 2011.

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  • Paul.

    What about the outrage of those who live in the St James ward. Caerphilly Council should hang their heads in shame they have let down it’s residents, they are a disgrace but as usual they blame Westminster for their failings. Change the record, stop bleating on about Westminster, this is a local government problem that has been caused by nobody else but Caerphilly Council. No doubt the residents of the most deprived area in Wales will shortly be receiving their latest council tax bills including yet another higher than inflation increase, whilst the fat cats in their plush glass tower count their huge salaries – when Election Day comes around this shower should be voted out.

  • Phil

    Fake outrage from the MP. His Labour colleague Jeff Cuthbert was the Minister for Tackling Poverty in the Welsh Government. What did he do? Nothing, presumably as his lost his Cabinet role recently and there are also two Cabinet members representing that ward.

  • Peter E

    I am not sure what can be done for this area, as any hint of increasing benefits results in public outrage these days. I was involved in community projects there over 20 years ago and the same problems see to re-occur, so no-one seems to be getting to the root cause. But I would add that I feel that the local authorities are best placed to be able to understand and deal with issues, and should be addressing them and not blaming central government. Considering I thought that Caerphilly was one of the more affulent areas of the valleys I am honestly surprised, having seen estates like the Gurnos, and the general condition of some the valley towns.