Villages and small towns across the land have lost more than 1 million young people over the last 30 years as they gravitate towards the cities and urban areas for education and to find work.
In the same period smaller towns and villages have seen an influx of 2 million over 65’s. Cities get younger as smaller towns and villages get much older. A report by the Centre for Towns, a new think tank, are to publish data from academics and analysts to focus attention on the needs of smaller population centres.
The report says: “A diminishing pool of working age population combined with a growing elderly population in small and medium sized towns will continue to pose a challenge to policy makers and put pressure on local services.”
It also has political implications as older people in small towns and villages were more likely to vote Conservative in this year’s general election, whereas younger voters in the cities voted overwhelmingly for Labour.