Just 20 per cent of people living in Wakefield district have a high-level qualifications, a report has found.
A study of 64 UK towns and cities ranks Wakefield as the third worst performer in the country with 20.6 per cent of the district’s population having a degree or higher education qualification.
The report, by the think-tank Centre for Cities, also shows the north-south divide has widened over the last ten years with one job created in the north for every 12 jobs created by southern cities.
Andrew Carter, Centre for Cities’ acting chief executive, said: “The stark picture the report paints of the enormous gap in the fortunes of UK cities over 10 years underlines why a ‘steady as she goes’ approach must be scrapped. We must move from thinking that bundling up new funding streams with bureaucratic delays, or simply tinkering around the edges with well-intentioned announcements, will be enough to reverse trends that are becoming increasingly entrenched.
“Cities need long-term funding and strategic planning, and policies that go to the heart of addressing the key drivers of economic growth – including transport, planning, skills and housing. This report throws down the gauntlet for all parties to turn their recent interest and pledges around cities and devolution into a clear plan to grow jobs and businesses, and improve quality of life throughout the United Kingdom.”