Where do we owe the most?

UK debt blackspots revealed


Word debt under magnifying glass

People living in parts of Bath, Islington in north London and Alnwick in Northumberland have the highest levels of personal loan debt per head in Britain, according to figures published by major lenders.

The figures, which have been released jointly by the British Bankers' Association (BBA) and the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), aim to give a more detailed picture of how borrowing by people and businesses varies across more than 9,000 postcode sectors.

They also reveal that one quarter of Britain's £897 billion mortgage debt is owed by people in London, at around £229 billion, amid strong house price growth in the capital, while only around 3% of it is held in the North East, at £26 billion.

London's mortgage debts combined with those in the South East come to around £392 billion - equating to over two-fifths of Britain's total outstanding mortgage debt.

The figures, which are for the end of September 2013, do not include all banks and building societies.
Those lenders which have participated cover about three-quarters of the mortgage market, three-fifths of bank lending to small and medium-sized businesses and three-fifths of personal loans.

The lenders that have contributed to the figures are Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group, HSBC, RBS Group, Santander and Clydesdale, Nationwide Building Society and Yorkshire Bank.

When combined with population records, the research showed that in the Bath postcode sector of BA1 9, people owe £2,311 per head, which is the highest amount of personal loan debt per person in Britain.

This is followed by the postcode sector of EC1V 2 in London, which covers parts of Islington, which has the second highest level of personal debt per head, at £2,188, according to the figures.

The postcode sector of NE66 4, which covers parts of Alnwick, just north of Newcastle-upon-Tyne came in third place, with people there owing £2,065 per person.

Postcodes in Peterborough, Leeds, Manchester and Preston were also in the "top 10" list of where people owed the most in personal loans per head.

The level of outstanding mortgage debt across different postcode sectors ranges from £664 million in SW11 6 in south west London, which covers swathes of Battersea and Clapham, to IV48 8 in Inverness
in Scotland, where a total of £633,183 is owed on mortgages.

In terms of the value of SME lending, the figures show that the postcode of N16 6 in north London has the highest outstanding balance, at £177 million, while G69 8 in Glasgow has the lowest outstanding balance at £23,179.

The BBA said that the regions outside London and the South East receive a higher proportion of SME lending than their share of turnover.

For example, London accounts for 21% of Britain's SME lending, but a higher proportion of its turnover, at 29%.

Meanwhile, Wales accounts for 5% of Britain's SME lending but only around 3% of its turnover. Scotland accounts for 8% of SME lending, and around 6% of turnover.

This is the second time that the quarterly data has been voluntarily published by banks and building societies, and coverage has increased since the first publication.

BBA chief economist Richard Woolhouse said: "We've been working hard to make this data as accurate and comprehensive as possible and it now covers 96% of lending to smaller businesses and 99% of personal loans by postcode sector.

"But this data is complex and it remains very difficult to draw firm conclusions about lending at a local level.

"However, this work underlines how banks are in the business of lending to companies and people wherever they are based in Great Britain."

Here are the postcode areas which owe the highest amounts in personal loans per person according to the findings, with the amount owed per head:

1. Bath, BA1 9, £2,311

2. London, EC1V 2, £2,188

3. Newcastle- upon-Tyne, NE66 4, £2,065

4. Peterborough, PE7 0, £1,622

5. Galashiels TD12 4, £1,571

6. Newcastle-upon-Tyne, NE13 9, £1,513

7. Leeds LS17 0 £1,513

8. Redhill RH6 7, £1,471

9. Manchester, M3 3, £1,365

10. Preston, PR7 7, £1,355

Here is the value of outstanding mortgages in each region:

:: East Midlands, £44.6 billion

:: East of England, £60.6 billion

:: London, £229.5 billion

:: North East, £26.1 billion

:: North West, £81.2 billion

:: Scotland, £64.1 billion

:: South East, £162.3 billion

:: South West, £79.6 billion

:: Wales, £28.5 billion

:: West Midlands, £61.8 billion

:: Yorkshire and the Humber, £58.2 billion

:: Britain, £897.2 billion

Here is the estimated percentage of Britain's SME turnover accounted for by each region followed by
the percentage of Britain's SME lending which goes to each region. The data has been calculated using figures from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS):

:: London, 29%, 21%

:: South East, 15%, 13%

:: North West, 10%, 11%

:: South West, 7%, 11%

:: West Midlands, 7%, 9%

:: Scotland, 6%, 8%

:: Yorkshire and the Humber, 7%, 7%

:: East of England, 9%, 7%

:: East Midlands, 6%, 5%

:: Wales, 3%, 5%

:: North West, 2%, 3%

The UK's bankruptcy hotspots by rate of insolvencies

The UK's bankruptcy hotspots by rate of insolvencies