Fairlight tops poll for older people figures

Fairlight has a higher percentage of older people than Bexhill according to a new study by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The new census of coastal communities shows that on average 20 per cent of people living in them are aged 65 or over, compared to 16 per nationwide.

Bexhill has 32 percent while Fairlight easily tops that with 44 percent.

The news comes as no surprise to long-standing Fairlight resident Sylvia Gutsell who said: “Fairlight has always been a place where people retire to.

“We don’t have access to shops like we used to. There used to be two shops here and a garage.

“The nearest school is Guestling Bradshaw and that is oversubsribed.

“We do though have a very good youth club in the village.”

The ONS said the data confirms the widely-held perception that ‘older people are more likely to live by the coast’.

In general, the smaller the coastal community the higher the share of population aged 65 or over, with the share rising from a 17 per cent average among the large coastal communities to a 25 per cent average among the small coastal communities.

It means that eight out of the ten areas with the highest average age in the whole country are by the sea.

In 2011, some 6.2million people lived in a coastal communities, including 2.2 million who lived within the 12 largest.

While people choose to move to the seaside in their retirement, it can mean areas struggle to cope with increased demand on health and social care services.

Some seven percent of people in coastal areas have a long-term health problem that means day to day activities were ‘limited a lot’, compared to 5.7 per cent of people nationwide.

Many coastal towns are underfunded says a report,