I have been working with mylocaleconomy.org on a series of maps to complement their report on the potential impacts of Brexit on local economies. The maps are available in the gallery below and the full report can be accessed at http://www.mylocaleconomy.org/brexit-potential-impacts-for-local-economies. The press release is available below.

Images may be downloaded for personal use but please do not reproduce without prior permission. All images © copyright mapden.com.




Press release: 27 March 2017


‘Hard Brexit’ could leave local economies struggling

Manufacturing and low-income localities in North and Midlands particularly vulnerable


A ‘hard Brexit’ without special arrangements to support jobs and industries will hit Britain’s manufacturing centres and poorest localities hardest, research published today by economic experts My Local Economy reveals.

While attention has focused on how Brexit will affect the high-flying financial industries of London, negative impacts may be felt all over Britain. My Local Economy’s research ranks council areas across Britain in terms of economic vulnerability to Brexit, with some surprising findings.

Areas that may feel the pinch include specialist employment centres such as Tewkesbury and Stratford-on-Avon, areas that are highly dependent on EU labour including Watford and Moray, and low income communities where people will be hit hardest by price inflation, including Blackpool and West Somerset.

Dr Glenn Athey, author of the research and director of My Local Economy, said: ‘We have had to assume there will be a “hard Brexit” without alternative free trade deals to replace current EU arrangements because there is no evidence of plans to prevent it.

‘Local business and political leaders need to act now to assess the risks to their localities and support important local industries. Understanding the risks posed by Brexit and how best to prevent them is essential if we are to protect jobs and incomes.’

The research, Brexit: Potential impacts for local economies, creates an index of vulnerability based on official statistical data. The index is visualised in a series of maps created by Mapden.com. It shows that any economic restructuring following Brexit is likely to be uneven, with losers as well as gainers spread across the country.

Those most at risk are manufacturing centres like Sunderland that depend on global supply chains, centres of labour-intensive industries such as agriculture and tourism that depend on EU migrant workers, and low-income communities that will be vulnerable to rising inflation resulting from tariff barriers and the depreciation of sterling against other currencies.

The report provides advice and recommendations on how localities can plan ahead to avoid the worst potential impacts of Brexit by investing in market intelligence and skills, and by continuing to welcome overseas investment and labour.

The tables of the most vulnerable areas are below:


  Most vulnerable areas overall  
1 Fylde Chemicals, automotive and transport, dependency on EU labour
2 Barrow-in-Furness Automotive and transport
3 Flintshire Chemicals, automotive and transport, dependency on EU labour
4 Ribble Valley Chemicals, automotive and transport, dependency on EU labour
5 Craven Pharmaceuticals, dependency on EU labour
6 Tower Hamlets Financial services
7 City of London Financial services
8 Stratford-on-Avon Automotive and transport
9 Knowsley Chemicals, automotive and transport
10 Pendle Chemicals, automotive and transport, dependency on EU labour


  Most vulnerable areas because of industrial specialisms at risk if hard Brexit
1 Preston
2 North Somerset
3 Chesterfield
4 Blaby
5 Welwyn Hatfield
6 Bracknell Forest
7 Suffolk Coastal
8 Camden
9 Taunton Deane
10 Three Rivers


  Most vulnerable areas because of low incomes and inflation
1 Blackpool
2 West Somerset
3 Lincoln
4 Eden
5 Hyndburn
6 Rossendale
7 Thanet
8 Torridge
9 Mansfield
10 Kingston upon Hull, City of
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