HARTLEPOOL has been named in the top 10 of most deprived seaside towns, according to new figures released by the Office of National Statistics.
Blackpool, which welcomes more visitors a year than any other UK coastal town, had the highest level of deprivation of the larger English seaside destinations in 2010.
The next most-deprived larger-destination towns were Clacton, in Essex and Hastings, in East Sussex, with 25 of the 31 larger English seaside resorts having higher levels of deprivation than the measure for England on average.
Hartlepool was ranked as sixth on the list, with neighbours South Shields in eighth and Sunderland two places further down.
While 20 per cent of England overall was considered deprived in 2010, the figure for the 31 larger English seaside destinations was 26.9 per cent – a rise on the 2007 figure of 26 per cent.
The biggest areas of deprivation for the seaside towns in 2010 were in the areas of health and disability, followed by employment.
The ONS said: “Our analysis has considered levels of deprivation in larger English seaside destinations, which may have once thrived on seaside resort tourism.
“There is a perception that these economies have declined and are enduring high levels of deprivation as a result of people going on holiday abroad rather than in England.”
Other towns to figure in the top 10 were Ramsgate, Margate, Great Yarmouth and Barrow in Furness.