The APPG for 'left behind' neighbourhoods was active between June 2020 and March 2024. This website will no longer be updated.

What is a ‘left behind’ neighbourhood?

‘Left behind’ neighbourhoods are communities that suffer from a combination of social and economic deprivation, poor connectivity (physical and digital), low levels of community engagement and a lack of community spaces and places.

What is the APPG for ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods?

The All-Party Parliamentary Group for ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods is a cross party group of MPs and Peers. It is committed to improving social and economic outcomes for residents living in ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods, through the development and advocacy of hyper-local initiatives and policies to ensure that communities are stronger and more resilient in the future.

What is the Community Wealth Fund and how does it relate to the APPG? 

The Community Wealth Fund is a proposal to release the next wave of dormant assets (from stocks, shares, bonds and insurance policies) to create a new endowment. The Fund would invest in the 225 ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods across England identified by the APPG. It would enable them access to the sort of social infrastructure that other areas often take for granted, but is essential to a community’s long term economic and social wellbeing.

The creation of the Fund is supported by the APPG, as well as the Community Wealth Fund Alliance, a growing group of public, private and voluntary sector organisations.

How are ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods identified?

‘Left behind’ neighbourhoods are identified by combining data from the Community Needs Index (CNI) and Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD). The CNI identifies areas that have poor connectivity (physical and digital), low levels of community engagement and a lack of community spaces and places. The IMD ranks areas based on their levels of social and economic deprivation. Neighbourhoods that rank amongst the most deprived 10% in both the IMD and the CNI are classified as ‘left behind’, numbering 225 neighbourhoods in total.

Why do we use the term ‘left behind’?

We do not use ‘left behind’ to imply that the areas so described lack people with skills and commitment or a rich heritage. We know from our experience of the Big Local programme that the reverse is generally the case. However, they have tended not to receive a fair share of the investment available and therefore lack the services and facilities that many of us take for granted. It is these services and facilities that help to connect people in a community and bind them together. It is in this sense that they are ‘left behind’.

Where are the 225 ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods?

‘Left behind’ neighbourhoods are largely concentrated in housing estates on the edges of our post-industrial towns and cities and in coastal areas, particularly in the North and Midlands, although there are areas to be found in pockets of deprivation along the South coast. The North East has 56 ‘left behind’ wards, whilst the North West has 54. The East Midlands has 17 wards and the West Midlands 31 whilst Yorkshire and the Humber has 28 wards. The East of England has 18 wards joined by 16 across the South East, predominantly located along the coast.

There are very few ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods in London and other city centres. This is due to the proliferation of social infrastructure in these places, meaning that whilst they may have significant problems with deprivation, they have low community need as defined by the Community Needs Index.

2,396,610 people – or 4.3% of the population in England – live in a ‘left behind’ neighbourhood.