Life expectancy in England declines the further north you live

·Senior news reporter, Yahoo News UK
·2-min read
File photo dated 24/02/18 of an aerial view of (from the left), High Level Bridge, Swing Bridge, Tyne Bridge and Gateshead Millennium Bridge, which span the River Tyne in Newcastle. The North East looks set to become the latest area in England to come under local restrictions as coronavirus cases rise.
An aerial view of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. People in the North East have the lowest life expectancy in England, new figures show. (PA)

Life expectancy in England declines the further north you live, new figures show.

The latest life expectancy figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on Thursday show people in the north of England are not expected to live as long as those in the south.

People in the North East and North West have the lowest life expectancy, while those in London and the South East are expected to live longest.

The chasm is demonstrated by the following life expectancies for males…

  • North East 78.0

  • North West 78.4

  • Yorkshire and the Humber 78.8

  • West Midlands 79.0

  • East Midlands 79.5

  • South West 80.4

  • East of England 80.5

  • South East 80.8

  • London 80.9

and females…

  • North East 81.8

  • North West 82.1

  • Yorkshire and the Humber 82.5

  • West Midlands 82.9

  • East Midlands 82.9

  • East of England 83.9

  • South West 84.1

  • South East 84.3

  • London 84.7


The figures were based on data between 2017 and 2019, meaning they don’t take the coronavirus pandemic into account.

The North East also had the lowest life expectancies in the 2014 to 2016 data set, though the latest figures show a 2.5 month and 3.5 month increase since then.

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It follows the long-running theme of a “divide” between the poorer north and more affluent south, with a 2015 report highlighting the differences in life expectancies between England’s rich and poor regions.

Ben Humberstone, from the ONS, said of London’s high life expectancy in the latest figures: “The rate of growth in life expectancy in London continues to surpass that occurring in other regions and the constituent countries of the UK.

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“This has resulted in London now having the highest life expectancy for both males and females among regions in England.”

A north/south divide has even been identified regarding coronavirus infections, with Yahoo News UK reporting on Friday that the 49 places where the virus is spreading fastest are all in the north of England.

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