Indices of Deprivation: finding out about your neighbourhood

The Office for National Statistics is the place to go for useful information about the area where you live. It’s super-handy for report writing, if you want to throw in some charming maps and bar-charts to illustrate the demographics of your area, with lots of lovely footnotes showing that you have done your research properly, see?

Find out some basic info about your neighbourhood

How Taunton compares

I recommend starting by looking at the statistics that are available for your neighbourhood, which you can find at  For a nice easy-to-read summary, enter your postcode in the right-hand section (‘Neighbourhood Summary’) and press SEARCH.

This will give you lots of useful figures  – numbers of people living in your area, number of houses – and lots of other information from the Indices of Deprivation.  It shows in a very simple graphical format how your neighbourhood compares with the national picture.

You can browse for more data covering all sorts of areas by clicking on the tabs at the top of the website, which will tell you information about people, health, business, work, education, housing – and all in nice simple diagrams! What’s not to like about that?

What are the Indices fo Deprivation?

Since the 1970s the government has calculated local measures of deprivation in England. This information is used to target resources (it’s v. useful for supporting funding applications). The following comes from the introduction to the report The English Indices of Deprivation 2010:

Deprivation covers a broad range of issues and refers to unmet needs caused by a lack of resources of all kinds, not just financial. The English Indices of Deprivation attempt to measure a broader concept of multiple deprivation, made up of several distinct dimensions, or domains, of deprivation.

The seven ‘domains’ are:

  1. Income deprivation
  2. Employment deprivation
  3. Health deprivation and disability
  4. Education, skills and training deprivation
  5. Barriers to housing and services
  6. Crime
  7. The living environment deprivation

Find out more:

If you want to find out more about the Indices of Deprivation you can view the full reports and excel spreadsheets via:

What to do with this data:

  • Put it in your reports of course! This data is perfect for producing lots of lovely nuggets of information for providing background information for reports.  Very useful for the ‘local background’ section of your LINk Annual Report, too.
  • Print out boundary maps: There is a very useful tool for printing out boundary maps on the ONS site here. If you have a bit of a fiddle you can print off all sorts of useful maps – ward boundaries, PCT boundaries, Local Authority boundaries – all of which is useful for many reasons, not least so you can work out whether you are actually turning up at the right LINk…

2 Comments on “Indices of Deprivation: finding out about your neighbourhood”

  1. Caroline says:

    Yo, Lucy! Caroline from LINk Devon here, I got hold of the Lower Super Output Area stats for Devon re benefits for working age and retired people. Although our lovely Stats man in Public Health produces local figs for multiple deprevation, I asked him nicely to do a data visualisation just for benefit claimants across Devon which he did. Do you have any tips for data visualisation that doesnt cost a packet, the system he uses costs about £1000. Survey monkey is OK but a bit one dimensional. I also like this blog lots of beautiful articles about mapping and stuff, and I also found this on, where he has taken the stats and done some charts.

    let me know what you think!



    • datagoat says:

      Yo! There are some free mapping tools online that I have used to plot simple maps, like – but generally, I would recommend taming a local Stats bod from the council or public health as you have already done. 🙂 They respond well to biscuits and promises of beer. Unfortunately the cool mapping software like MapInfo is big £££££ and I haven’t found anything as good or easy.

      If you are very geeky, you can create lots of useful maps if you can master Google Earth’s backend which involves coding with KML files. I have dabbled with this but generally given up crying after an hour or two.

      Thanks for those blog links, I will check them out. 🙂


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