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Homeless deaths in Great Yarmouth over double the national rate, figures reveal

PUBLISHED: 15:52 26 February 2019

Ten homeless people died in Great Yarmouth between 2013 and 2017. Picture: PA/REBECCA NADEN

Ten homeless people died in Great Yarmouth between 2013 and 2017. Picture: PA/REBECCA NADEN

Ten homeless people died in Great Yarmouth over five years, more than double the national estimate, new figures reveal.

Ten homeless people died in Great Yarmouth between 2013 and 2017. Picture: bodnarchukTen homeless people died in Great Yarmouth between 2013 and 2017. Picture: bodnarchuk

Data released by the government also show the rate of homeless deaths in the seaside town is the highest in Norfolk.

It is the first time data of this kind have been released.

The figures, which look at the five years between 2013 and 2017, account for both identified and estimated deaths across the country.

Ten deaths in Great Yarmouth were identified as homeless, with three in each of the final two years.

Both 2016 and 2017 also saw four estimated deaths.

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has said the numbers are a “robust but conservative estimate, so the real numbers may be higher”.

The data also calculate the estimated homeless deaths relative to the total population.

In Great Yarmouth over the five years studied by the ONS this was double the national average and almost four times the regional average.

The figures for both 2016 and 2017 were five deaths per 100,000 of the total population, while regionally they were 0.5.

In England there were 1.3 and 1.4 deaths respectively.

The number for the five years combined in Great Yarmouth was 2.7.

Regionally it was 0.7 and nationally it was 1.3.

A spokesperson for Great Yarmouth Borough Council said: “The council is aware that unfortunately there are sometimes deaths of homeless people who are rough-sleeping or staying in temporary accommodation. These deaths can occur for a number of reasons. The Council actively works with a number of local agencies to support homeless people, especially those who are more vulnerable as they are rough-sleeping to try to prevent those deaths which can be directly connected to homelessness.”

The Norfolk town with the next highest rate of homeless deaths was Norwich, with 1.8, followed by Kings Lynn and West Norfolk at 1.5.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council said that 27 homeless people have been accommodated through the Severe Weather Emergency Protocal (SWEP), with seven of them securing permanent accommodation with council assistance.

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