As Britain enters its sixth week of lockdown, new economic data has suggested that two of Lincolnshire’s most popular coastal towns are now at risk of bankruptcy due to ongoing shelter-in-place orders.
Mablethorpe and Skegness came first and second (respectively) in a list of the most vulnerable communities drawn up by a joint study between the Centre for Towns and the University of Southampton – and made public this week by the Sky News network. Meanwhile, on a wider scale, the same research came to the concerning conclusion that when it came to the economic knock-on effects of ongoing lockdown, no less than half of the UK’s coastal towns should now be considered amongst the top 10 per cent most at-risk communities in the country.
The risk ranking was calculated by the proportion of population now unable to work due to their sector being indefinitely shutdown – with tourist and leisure-facing communities some of the worst hit. By contrast, nearly two thirds of white-collar commuter towns were ranked in the least-at-risk section. Speaking for the people of Mablethorpe, councillor Carl Tebbut said that the economic shut-down had effectively kicked his community whilst it was already down. “We’re already an area with fairly high deprivation in the first place, so to deprive us of the one thing we have in tourism is a tragedy,” he explained. “It’s a terrible situation for anyone who relies on visitors.”