Rother has most over 75s in East Sussex

A report entitled Sussex Uncovered has provided an interesting glimpse into the living conditions in Bexhill and the surrounding area.

The Sussex Community Foundation pulled together a range of statistics for its study, which was released late last week.

It breaks the county down into smaller areas based around the major towns – with Bexhill falling into the Rother category.

The report showed Rother’s population rose by six per cent in the years 2001-2011 to 90,588, of which 47,481 (52 per cent) live rurally compared to 43,107 (48 per cent) in an urban setting.

It has the highest percentage of older people in Sussex, with one in six people aged over 75, with 30 per cent of locals older than 65 compared to a Sussex joint low for people under 14 – just 15 per cent.

Rother also has the joint highest per cent of residents describing themselves as white in ethnicity – 97 per cent, compared to the lowest in Sussex which is 80 per cent in Crawley.

And Rother is also among the top scorers for the number of working age locals (16-64) in receipt of disability living allowance.

Rother has 96 claimants per 1,000 residents – a rate second only to nearby Hastings, which has 112. Sussex’s lowest rate is found in the West Sussex town of Horsham, which has just 50 per 1,000.

The mean income for Rother in 2010/11 was £22,900 a year.

The Sussex average was £25,605 and the South East’s figure higher still at £29,100. Rother was actually lower than the national mean average of £25,640. Neighbouring Hastings, at £19,600, was the only area in Sussex to dip below the £20,000 mark.

Around 13 per cent of older people in Rother in 2010 were considered to be living in poverty, while the figure for children was 21 per cent – or around one in five. Hastings again topped the charts in both fields, with an older person poverty rate of 23 per cent and a child poverty rate of 31 per cent.

Slightly more than one in three Rother locals (34 per cent) in 2011 were employed in public services and the area had a 3.9 per cent unemployment rate among 16-24 year olds not in further education.