Hotspot

Brighton has the most internet searches for the word lonely. Plymouth is top for debt problems. Aldershot has the most Buddhists. Jenny Kleeman explores locations at the extremes of UK society, uncovering the stories behind a revealing statistic.

The Office for National Statistics gathers data on everything - the economy, employment, even our wellbeing. We have more data available than ever before, including from search engines, and increasingly the government and big businesses are making crucial judgments based on these statistics. But these numbers can't tell us everything. In this series, Jenny explores the true stories behind the figures.

Episodes

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House Prices2018083020190801 (R4)

Brighton has the most internet searches for the word lonely. Plymouth is top for debt problems. Aldershot has the most Buddhists. Jenny Kleeman explores locations at the extremes of UK society, uncovering the stories behind a revealing statistic.

The Office for National Statistics gathers data on everything - the economy, employment, even our wellbeing. We have more data available than ever before, including from search engines, and increasingly the government and big businesses are making crucial judgments based on these statistics. But these numbers can’t tell us everything. In this series, Jenny explores the true stories behind the figures.

Episode 4: House Prices
Jenny is in Copeland, Cumbria. According to the Office for National Statistics, it’s the most affordable place to buy a home in England and Wales, hitting a sweet spot where low house prices are combined with high average wages. Jenny meets millennials under the age of 25 and able to buy a house. How does getting on the housing ladder so young affect their life? And is it the utopia it seems?

Produced by Paul Smith

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4

Jenny Kleeman explores places at the extremes of UK society.

01Loneliness2018082720190313 (R4)

Why does Brighton have the highest rate of internet searches for the word lonely? Jenny starts her investigation by meeting 87-year-old widow Pat O'Byrne whose post on Facebook last year went viral. Her plea for someone to take her out for a Sunday roast dinner attracted responses from as far afield as Japan and Canada. But could Brighton's history of internet searches reveal an isolation epidemic in the city that's hidden from view?

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4.

Jenny Kleeman explores places at the extremes of UK society.

02Bingo2018082820190320 (R4)

Episode 2: Bingo
Jenny visits Mecca Forge in Glasgow, the biggest hall in a city that's the hot spot for bingo. She shadows its manager, Paul McGlinchey, who is trying to introduce the game to a younger audience. But is it enough to keep bingo thriving here?

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4.

Jenny Kleeman explores places at the extremes of UK society.

03Debt2018082920190708 (R4)

Brighton has the most internet searches for the word lonely. Plymouth is top for debt problems. Aldershot has the most Buddhists. Jenny Kleeman explores locations at the extremes of UK society, uncovering the stories behind a revealing statistic.

The Office for National Statistics gathers data on everything - the economy, employment, even our wellbeing. We have more data available than ever before, including from search engines, and increasingly the government and big businesses are making crucial judgments based on these statistics. But these numbers can't tell us everything. In this series, Jenny explores the true stories behind the figures.

Episode 3: Debt
Jenny is in Plymouth. According to government statistics, it has the highest rate of personal insolvency in the country. She meets John Sanderson, a man in his 50s who moved to the city over a decade ago. A recent chain of unfortunate life events has left him in unsustainable credit card debt. With bailiffs circling his home and his mental health deteriorating, Jenny joins him as he seeks help. He describes Plymouth as "a city with its back to the sea". What does John's story tell us about the culture of debt here?

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4.

Jenny Kleeman explores places at the extremes of UK society.

04House Prices2018083020190801 (R4)

Brighton has the most internet searches for the word lonely. Plymouth is top for debt problems. Aldershot has the most Buddhists. Jenny Kleeman explores locations at the extremes of UK society, uncovering the stories behind a revealing statistic.

The Office for National Statistics gathers data on everything - the economy, employment, even our wellbeing. We have more data available than ever before, including from search engines, and increasingly the government and big businesses are making crucial judgments based on these statistics. But these numbers can’t tell us everything. In this series, Jenny explores the true stories behind the figures.

Episode 4: House Prices
Jenny is in Copeland, Cumbria. According to the Office for National Statistics, it’s the most affordable place to buy a home in England and Wales, hitting a sweet spot where low house prices are combined with high average wages. Jenny meets millennials under the age of 25 and able to buy a house. How does getting on the housing ladder so young affect their life? And is it the utopia it seems?

Produced by Paul Smith

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4

Jenny Kleeman explores places at the extremes of UK society.

05 LASTBuddhism2018083120190327 (R4)

What brought the Dalai Lama to the grounds of Aldershot FC in Hampshire in both 2012 and 2015? The 2011 Census shows that Aldershot has the greatest population of Buddhists in the UK. Jenny spends a day at the Buddhist Community Centre and finds out how the Gurkha Justice Campaign, supported by Joanna Lumley, has transformed the town in the past decade.

Produced by Paul Smith

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4

Jenny Kleeman explores places at the extremes of UK society.