Poverty in the UK: Forgotten by the Crown

It’s the great English paradox. If the country has a historically low unemployment rate of 3.6%, poverty is breaking all records: today, more than 15 million Britons are considered poor… That’s almost a quarter of the population!

Galloping inflation and the explosion of energy costs in recent months and forced millions into poverty. But there is also the hyper-flexibility of wages and the growing uberization of hundreds of thousands of self-employed people… All aggravated by more than 10 years of severe cuts in social assistance initiated under the government of David Cameron and a disengagement of the State in the public services…

As a result, the United Kingdom, which had only a few dozen food banks in 2010, now has more than 2,000… Life expectancy is stagnating, even declining in the most disadvantaged regions where people die 10 years earlier sooner than elsewhere, victim of what is known as “shit life syndrome”, literally the shitty life syndrome: a deadly cocktail of multiple pathologies and addictions.

So, millions of Britons engage in voluntary work to make up for the shortcomings of the government. This is the advent of the “Big Society”, a society of charities, charities, theorized in 2010 by the then Prime Minister: David Cameron, the architect of the austerity policy!

We went to meet England’s working poor, the working poor, all forced to rely on solidarity to survive. From Blackpool, a seaside town in the north-west plagued by poverty, to the green county of Cumbria on the Scottish border, one of the most rural in the country, where public transport and services have become almost non-existent, via Ashton -under-Lyne, a factory town paralyzed by the absence of economic prospects, plunged into a Great Britain.


  • Year: 2022
  • Duration: 56 mins
  • Production: Les Films de L'Odyssée
  • Director: Grégoire Lamarche & Stéphane Rodriguez
  • Available Versions: ENG, FRA
  • Country of production: France

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