Thursday, November 07, 2013

Leaving Lewisham

The latest estate agents puff-piece for New Cross has an interesting typo. According to 'New Cross: Bohemian city living with a definite buzz' at net-lettings.co.uk (published 29 October 2013): 'New Cross is becoming an increasingly popular place to leave, particularly with younger, more artistic types'.


A new release of data from the 2011 Census suggests though that the borough of Lewisham really is a place to leave - at least during the working day. 'The Workday Population of England and Wales' compares the difference between the resident population and workday populations in different parts of the country. Obviously many people work in an area different to the one they live in, but the pattern varies. Some areas have many more people travelling into them for work than leaving them, for others its the opposite.

One of the striking findings is that Lewisham has the highest percentage loss in the country between the resident population and the workday population. In 2011, 206,000 adults aged 16-74 lived in Lewisham. But in working hours on a working day, the number within the borough fell by 28% to 149,000. This means that many more people living in Lewisham have to travel out of borough for work than travel into Lewisham for their jobs. By comparison - at the most extreme - only 6,000 adults aged 16-74 were living in the City of London but 314,000 people worked there.

Does it matter? Well it does reflect the fact that jobs are unevenly distributed across London and across the country. And that also presumably means that people in Lewisham are more likely to have a longer journey into work than people in some areas. Factor into that the high levels of deprivation in some parts of Lewisham, high transport costs, and relatively poor transport links in some areas (no tube at least) and you get many people in low paid jobs extending their working days with long journeys on buses. But if you get the bus very early in the morning you probably already know that.

2 comments:

Ben Gidley said...

And add to this the increasing poverty of Lewisham, along with rest of outer London, as inner London becomes socially cleansed: http://www.economist.com/blogs/blighty/2013/09/mapping-gentrification

Nick Barron said...

@Ben - Lewisham is inner London. http://brockleycentral.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/the-great-inversion.html