The most deprived areas of Reading have been revealed, according to data.

Across the town, more than one in ten people are living in poverty with 11.4 per cent described as 'income-deprived'. 

The Chronicle has been investigating the wealth disparity across the town and has visited the wealthiest and the least wealthy neighbourhoods to speak to residents about their thoughts. 

The town as a whole ranks 140 out of 316 for local authorities in England as the most deprived.

Some areas are more affected than others, as the below map details. In Whitley, for example, more than 30 per cent of children are living in poverty. 

Out of all of the 97 neighbourhoods in Reading, 12 are among the 20 percent of the most deprived income areas in England.

Here is a list of them all.

Whitley and Whitley Wood have some very deprived areas, with most of the neighbourhood falling under the “more deprived” category.

A section of Whitley even falls into the most deprived category.

Reading West also appears on the map as being a particularly deprived area, with the majority of the neighbourhood labelled as deprived.

Calcot is also considered deprived, as well as an area of Norcot.

Dee Park also falls into the category of “more deprived” with most of it in the red zone.

This is also reflected in areas of Newtown, Coley Park, Coley, and Southcote.

The issue of deprivation in Whitley was previously subject to a study by Reading Borough Council and Reading University.

Their report, published in 2018, found: "Whitley is a ‘warm and friendly’ environment plagued by stigma surrounding low aspirations, poverty, unemployment and fear amongst others. It is often attributed with negative connotations despite being very centred on people and their community. With a large amount of potential in the area, this project aims to unlock the hidden aspirations and allow the area to grow in a sustainable and manageable manner. "

The same report noted that: "Whitley is the most deprived ward in Reading with key factors such as poverty, employment and education being key issues. The area is also in the bottom 1% in the country in terms of percentage of students not staying on in education post 16, and almost half the number of pupils in the area gained 5 GCSEs (A-C*) than in Reading generally in 2015. Furthermore, the ward has a proportionally younger population that the rest of Reading with 25% of the population aged between 0-15, highlighting the need for raised aspirations and enhanced schooling."

Speaking to Whitley residents this month, many highlighted the strong community ethos that prevails there and the way people will help one another out.

Certainly research shows that a sense of community and belonging is stronger in working class neighbourhoods.

Speaking about many of the positives of Whitley, resident Zoe Annereau said: “Whitley has links to so many things. Reading Girl’s School is one of the top-performing schools in the UK (or was the case a couple of years ago), Shinfield Studios a stone's throw away, and Green Park houses a wealth of opportunities.

“Oh, and we don’t have thousands of new builds congesting the roads unlike three-mile cross/Spencer’s wood!

“There is a lot to be proud of Whitley, and the older generation needs to remember that, rather than continuing the stigma!”

Karen Chesebro-Reilly added: “I love Whitley. We are down-to-earth people. On the bus when it's crowded some say, “Come on ducky we will all move up, squeeze up.”

“Some of the youngsters may look scary but talk to them and they are really nice. I have lived in Calcot, Tilehurst, the USA, and Spain but home is where the heart is and that's Whitley.”

In agreement with the previous comment, Zoe Langford said: “100%! I grew up in Whitley and it’s the only place that truly feels like home.

“I live in Tilehurst now and I do love it here, but nothing beats Whitley, nowhere near as bad as people say.”

Reflecting on the struggles, Alison Marshall said: “Pretending people aren’t deprived here doesn’t help. It’s not a bad word.

“The people are great and community spirit still exists but many, many people here are very poor and certainly a lot poorer than other areas in Reading.

“Our schools are failing our children, the sale of council housing means that families are paying extortionate rents for badly maintained properties.

“Unemployment for school leavers is the highest in Reading, homelessness among young people the same.

The lack of investment and employment opportunities here are to blame, not the people living here.”