TORBAY is the least prosperous community in the South West of the UK — a hard-hitting report on the state of the nation's wealth reveals today.
The UK Prosperity Index is the first of its kind and places Torbay among the poorest in the country.
According to the study Torbay is placed 312 out of 385 in the study — one above Belfast and one below East Lothian.
The study measures prosperity of all regions in the UK using seven categories.
They are prosperity through seven pillars—Economic Quality; Business Environment; Education; Health; Safety & Security, Social Capital; and Natural Environment.
Overall the report, from Legatum Institute, finds that UK cities are failing to turn their economic growth into better lives for people.
In the case of Torbay the local authority area scores poorly across the board.
In particular it comes in at number 383 in the Natural Environment category.
Rather than being a subjective assessment of the land and surroundings this category is measured by analysing four factors. These are waste generated; landfill percentage; air pollution, and protected land.
Torbay performs best in safety and security — 105 in the league.
Neighbouring local authority regions perform significantly better.
Teignbridge is at number 64 in the overall most prosperous (coming in the top 100 for safety, health and natural environment).
The Sough Hams does even better, appearing at number 38 on the overall list.
Both neighbouring authorities are among the least successful in terms of business environment.
Exeter is at number 97 on the list.
The most prosperous place in the UK according to the study is Waverley in Surrey. Number 389 is Kingston upon Hull.
The report's author, Harriet Maltby (Head of Policy Research at the Legatum Institute) said: "The UK's cities are letting down many of their residents by failing to turn their higher wealth into real prosperity, a prosperity, as much about wellbeing as wealth.
"They're failing because they are struggling to provide basic life chances to the large numbers who live there.
"If there is no good school for your child, your environment and lifestyle is unhealthy, and you don't have people around you to depend on, then many more life opportunities are closed to you. Theresa May is right to focus on those who feel left behind because this Index proves they have been.
"The challenge for Government is that government alone cannot provide all the answers. Many of the obstacles to prosperity are deeply local. Rather than try to solve the problems, government should better empower local government and communities to take the action they are best placed to know, if true prosperity is to reach everyone"