Advertising

Revealed: Shocking figures behind Wolverhampton's childhood obesity problem

By Megan Archer | Bilston | News | Published:

Almost 50 per cent of children in one area of Wolverhampton are overweight or even obese by the time they reach Year 6, shock figures show.

Bilston East, where 46 per cent of Year 6 pupils are overweight, has been highlighted as a city obesity hotspot.

It comes as a new policy banning takeaways near schools is about to be introduced.

Almost 46 per cent of Year 6 children are obese or overweight in Bilston East.

A total of 21.7 of adults are obese across Wolverhampton, 7.5 per cent of which are morbidly obese.

Council bosses agreed to stop takeaways from opening within 400 metres of schools last year in a bid to tackle the city’s obesity crisis.

Now they are putting the plans into action which will also limit the number of takeaways.

Councillor Steven Simkins, who represents Bilston East ward for Wolverhampton council where the most Year 6 children are obese in the city, said: “I think the onus should be on the Government.

"It’s the Government that allow these companies to lace our food with salt and sugar.

Advertising

“If we had quality regulations it would be a different story.”

Stephen Simkins

Councillor Simkins said the council’s plan to stop takeaways from opening near schools was a ‘step in the right direction’ but would not be enough to tackle the whole problem.

He added: "I’m not a big fan of that draconian method of telling someone what they can and can’t eat.

Advertising

"I think the quality of our food needs to be improved.

“I’ve been obese all my life and I feel I’ve tried every diet there is going.

"In my personal opinion, I think that my obesity is more of an addiction.

"This is something I feel passionately about and it’s about quality.

"The government need to protect people from this.”

Latest council data shows that almost 41 per cent of Year 6 children, aged 10-11, in Bilston North are overweight or obese, and just more than 44 per cent in Blakenhall.

The figures for Bushbury South and Low Hill are just more than 42 per cent, Heath Town is almost 42 per cent, and Oxley is just more than 40 per cent.

St Peter’s is also high, with just more than 43 per cent of Year 6’s overweight or obese.

Tettenhall Wightwick has the least amount of overweight or obese Year 6 pupils, with the percentage at about 27.

Back in October 2017 the city council approved plans to stop takeaways from operating near schools in Wolverhampton.

The new rules will mean that fast food shops cannot open within 400 metres of a secondary school, as well as ruling that no more than two takeaways can be next door to each other.

They will also be banned from opening in shopping centres or parades where there is already a high percentage.

In centres with more than 40 units, no more than 10 per cent will be allowed to be takeaways.

Megan Archer

By Megan Archer
Deputy Chief Reporter - @MeganA_Star

Deputy Chief Reporter with the Express & Star. Give me a call on 01902 319363 or email megan.archer@expressandstar.co.uk.

Advertising

Top Stories

Advertising

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News