Rural England

Low birthweight babies

Graphs on this page:

Supporting information:

Key points

Rural/urban ratios (urban = 10)

On most poverty and social exclusion indicators, rural areas have ‘better scores’ than urban areas.  The purpose of the table below is to differentiate between those subjects where rural areas are ‘a bit better’ and those where rural areas are ‘a lot better’.  It does so by presenting the rural statistics for the indicator as a proportion of the urban statistics.  So, for example, a rural ‘score’ of 6 in the table below means that the rural statistic is around 60% of its urban equivalent.

'Very rural' districts8
'Mostly rural' districts8
'Part rural' districts9

Definitions and data sources

The graphs

For each type of local authority district, the graph shows the proportion of babies born each year who are defined as having a low birth weight, i.e. less than 2½ kilograms (5½ lbs).  The data is for live-births only (i.e. it excludes still-births).

Level of the data

Lower tier local authorities (districts), as classified by the DEFRA 2009 classification system.  Both the DEFRA classification rules and their results by local authority can be found on the page on rural/urban classification systems.


ONS vital statistics.  To improve its statistical reliability, the data is the average for the latest three years.

The numbers

'Very rural' districts6.1
'Mostly rural' districts6.3
'Part rural' districts6.5
Urban districts7.6