Access to essential services
Graphs on this page:
- Those living in rural locations are more likely to find access to essential services inconvenient than those living in either urban areas or towns.
- For many services, those without cars are no more likely to find access to essential services inconvenient than those with cars. Note that this finding, which is somewhat surprising, is very different than its equivalent for England.
- People living in rural areas are among the groups least likely to make of use of demand-led information and leisure public services (including libraries, museums and sports/leisure facilities). While people in ‘high income areas’, ‘middle income areas’ and ‘low income areas’ had used these services on average between 15 and 17 times a year, the figure for ‘country dwellers’ was only 13. 1
- One outcome of retail exclusion is the relationship between the likelihood of having a healthy diet and deprivation. While other factors contribute, inequalities in access to good quality retail facilities is at least a partial explanation for the fact that 32% of men in the most deprived areas 2 eat fresh fruit every day compared to 55% in the least deprived areas 3.
Definitions and data sources
This indicator examines perceptions of the convenience of local services, showing the proportions of those who found the services ‘fairly inconvenient’ or ‘very inconvenient’. The services covered are grocery/food shop, post office, chemist, doctors, bank and outpatients.
In the first graph, the data is broken down by type of area, namely ‘urban’ (population 10,000 or greater), ‘small towns’ (population between 3,000 and 10,000) and ‘rural’ (population less than 3,000).
In the second graph, the data is broken down by the number of cars in the household.
The data source for both graphs is the Scottish Household Survey (SHS). To improve its statistical reliability, the data is the average for the three years the latest three years.
Overall adequacy of the indicator: high. The SHS is a large survey designed to be representative of private households and of the adult population in private households in Scotland.