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

Decorative image with the text "left behind neighbourhoods"


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

Find out more about our research services.

Featured posts

Decorative image with the text "Community Needs Index"

Resources and data

Community Needs Index 2023

In 2018, we were commissioned by Local Trust to develop a quantitative…

Decorative image with the text "Census 2021"

Resources and data

Census 2021 data: What has been released, what’s new and what’s changed?

ONS has published all small-area data from Census 2021 – and there…

Decorative image with the text "Research Project"

Research Projects

Evaluation of funding data for Northamptonshire Community Foundation

Northamptonshire Community Foundation distributes grants through a range of funds. The Household…

Case studies
Data analysis
Indices of Deprivation
left behind neighbourhoods
OCSI news
Research Projects
Resources and data