Life expectancy is falling in large parts of the UK and austerity could be to blame

Rob Waugh
Life expectancy plummets in parts of UK, data reveals

Life expectancy is falling in parts of the UK, new analysis has shown – and austerity cuts to public services could be to blame, experts have suggested.

By 2041, women will live to 86.2 years and men 83.4 years according to projections from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), which is a drop of a whole year on figures from 2015.

The analysis by Public Health England found that rural and post-industrial areas were seeing large drops in life expectancy.

Torridge in Devon and Hartlepool both saw male life expectancy drop by more than a year, according to Public Health England.


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By contrast, London and the southeast saw life expectancy rise.

Professor Danny Dorling of Oxford University said: ‘The fall in life expectancy in several geographical areas of England is most likely a result of the effects of public service cuts and austerity.

‘Many other possibilities can be ruled out. Rates of smoking and drinking alcohol have fallen in recent years so that cannot be blamed.

‘Between 2009 and very late 2017 there has been no serious influenza outbreak.’