Data Dive – The early impact of COVID-19 in ‘left-behind’ neighbourhoods

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Local Trust commissioned OCSI to carry out a ‘data dive’ into the early impacts of COVID-19 in ‘left-behind’ neighbourhoods.

This analysis was carried out for use by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on ‘left-behind’ neighbourhoods. The aim was to provide insight into the specific challenges ‘left behind’ areas face in relation to COVID-19.


The report builds on our original research with Local Trust, ‘Left behind? Understanding communities on the edge’. This defines ‘left behind’ areas as those neighbourhoods with the 10% highest need and deprivation in both the Index of Multiple Deprivation and the Community Needs Index.

This new analysis looks at the factors that make communities more vulnerable to COVID-19. For instance, clinical vulnerability and presence of vulnerable groups. In addition, it looks at the early response and impact of COVID-19 in left-behind neighbourhoods. For example, economic impacts and community response.

We then compared ‘left-behind’ areas to England as a whole and other deprived non ‘left-behind’ areas, to highlight where ‘left-behind’ areas are facing particular challenges.


  • The British Red Cross Vulnerability Index identifies ‘left behind’ areas as more vulnerable to impacts of the pandemic than across other similarly deprived areas
  • ‘Left behind’ areas are experiencing notable economic impacts arising from the pandemic and subsequent lockdown.
  • ‘Left behind’ areas have a relatively high proportion of vulnerable communities who are likely to require additional support.
  • Despite all of these factors, there is less evidence of a strong response from the voluntary and community sector in ‘left behind’ areas.

Read the full analysis

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