Lifestyles contrast in city constituency

First published in News

NEWPORT West covers the largest part of the city, including some of its poorest but also its most affluent areas.

With 81,800 residents, and 848 people per square kilometre, the area is more densely populated than Wales as a whole.

While areas such as Bassaleg are home to more professional, well-off workers, 13 per cent of Newport West's areas fall in the 10 per cent most deprived in Wales.

The social and economic make-up of Newport West continues to change dramatically.

Steel and related job losses hit hard throughout Newport and the percentage of people who have never worked or are in long-term unemployment, 4.4 per cent, is higher than the Welsh average of 3.8 per cent.

LG's arrival 11 years ago was hailed as one of Europe's biggest foreign investments. It promised 6,000 jobs for Newport as part of a £6 billion investment - but only a third of them ever materialised.

The collapse of the LG dream was confirmed at Christmas last year when more than 300 workers lost their jobs.

In May 2003, 870 jobs had already gone when the LG Phillips Displays TV tubes plant closed, leaving just 500 workers at the site.

But Newport West still holds a strong employment base in the civil service sector with the Patent and Statistics offices at Tredegar Park.

And the setting up of Newport Unlimited, Wales' first regeneration company, has seen major regeneration work begin to revamp the constituency.

Problems of health and social care mirror the national trend. More than one in five people suffer from a limiting long-term illness, compared with one in six 15 years ago. But these health problems remain slightly less than Wales as a whole.


STATISTICS Voters: 59,000 Band D council tax: £850.74 Proportion of population who are Welsh speaking: 9.8% Pensioner households: 23.9 % Never worked and long-term unemployed 4.4% Migrant population: 11%


CANDIDATES Rosemary Butler - Labour Andrew Constantine - English Democrat Matthew Evans - Conservative Nigel Flanagan - Liberal Democrats Brian Hancock - Plaid Cymru


2003 ASSEMBLY ELECTION Name/ Party/ Votes/ %
Rosemary Butler Labour 10,053 47.19 William Graham Conservative 6,301 29.58 Phylip Hobson Liberal Democrats 2,094 9.83 Hugh Moelwyn Hughes UKIP 1,102 5.17 Richard Morse Welsh Socialist Alliance Against The War 198 0.93 Anthony Salkeld Plaid Cymru 1,678 7.88 Turnout - 21,426 (34.59%) Majority - 3,752 (17.61%)

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