UK Child Poverty rates by local authority

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Research carried out by Loughborough University and published by provides further insight into the geography of poverty by estimating the proportion of children who are in poverty after housing costs by local authority. Four local authorities in London have the highest child poverty rates: Tower Hamlets (51%), Newham (49%), Barking and Dagenham (46%) and Hackney (45%). These are followed by Luton, just north of London in the East of England, at 45%.

The map highlights the degrees of variation in poverty rates both within and across regions. Some regions have consistently high or low child poverty rates across their local authorities, while others have a much wider range in poverty rates. Local authorities in the North East consistently have above average poverty rates, and all local authorities in this region, except Northumberland, have seen child poverty rates increase by at least 10 percentage points since 2012-15. Child poverty rates in Wales are also consistently above average, and clustered in the range of 27-36%. Wales has also seen substantial increases in child poverty rates over the last six years, with poverty rates increasing by between three and six percentage points.

Local authorities in the East Midlands, South West, South East, Scotland and Northern Ireland have child poverty rates clustered towards the lower end of the range, although there are exceptions within these areas with some local authorities like Glasgow City (29%), Leicester (35%), Slough (35%) and Bristol (33%) having above average poverty rates. Three quarters of the local authorities in these regions have seen falls in child poverty rates over the last six years.

There is a much wider range of poverty rates across local authorities within London, Yorkshire and Humberside, the North West and the West Midlands. The local authorities with both the highest and lowest poverty rates are in London, with Tower Hamlets at 51% and City of London at 10%. In Yorkshire and Humberside, Bradford has the highest child poverty rate at 40% while Harrogate has the lowest at 17%. In the West Midlands Birmingham has the highest poverty rate at 42% while Warwick has a 19% poverty rate.

The data presented here is from our 2023 UK Poverty report, setting out the trends and impacts of poverty across the UK. Read the full report UK Poverty 2023.