Wigan has third highest number of takeaways in the North West

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Council bosses say they are committed to improving health and well-being amid concerns about the number of takeaways in the borough.

The pledge comes as new figures show Manchester and Liverpool are the only areas in the North West with more takeaways than Wigan.

Over a fifth of adults and children eat takeaway meals at home more than once a week which is contributing to the nation’s obesity epidemic

Dr Rebecca Wagstaff

The data from Public Health England shows there are 345 fast food outlets in the borough.

That equates to 107.5 takeaways per 100,000 people, ranking Wigan 16th out of the 39 local authorities in the North West for rate per population.

Blackpool scored the highest at 192.9 per 100,000 people.

The information published by Public Health England shows there are 7,533 takeaways across the North West.

It is hoped the new data will be used by local authorities to target resources to help tackle obesity levels.

Dr Rebecca Wagstaff, deputy director for Public Health England North West, said: “Over a fifth of adults and children eat takeaway meals at home more than once a week which is contributing to the nation’s obesity epidemic.

“In the North West the majority of our local authorities are already tackling this issue and introducing a number of initiatives including trying to limit new takeaways, particularly around schools.”

Earlier this year Wigan Council adopted a new stance which meant all new applications for Leigh and Wigan town centre pubs, clubs and late-night takeaways were to be met with a default “no” unless exceptional circumstances could be proved by the applicant. It is a bid to crack down on booze-related crime and disorder.

But the number of fast food outlets in the borough is still set to rise, with plans for Nando’s, Subway and KFC to open at Robin Park. They will add to McDonald’s, Burger King, Costa Coffee and Pizza Hut already there. Prof Kate Ardern, director of public health for Wigan Council, said: “We know if we start early with our children, we can lay the foundations of good practice, make physical activity and healthy eating the norm and work towards our vision of prevention of ill health.

“Our work through Wellfest and the Daily Mile further demonstrates our commitment to tackling health and wellness in the borough. The Daily Mile has been integral to improving outcomes for children that are classed as obese and we now have 25 primary schools on board.

“Working in partnership with Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles and our other partners across health and education, we remain committed to improving health in Wigan borough, to make sure every child has the best possible start, and adults can lead long, healthy lives.”

She highlighted initiatives to tackle obesity such as Lose Weight, Feel Great, which includes one-to-one support from a health trainer, a consultant-led weight management service and group-based community weight management programme.

The council’s Let’s Get Movin’ programme has received national recognition for tackling childhood obesity.

A new survey published has found 80 per cent of adults are still failing to eat the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables every day.

National Charity Partnership conducted the survey and is urging people to take action to reduce their risk of developing type two diabetes and heart and circulatory disease.

Takeaway table

1. Manchester 752 in total - 144.6 per 100,000 per population

2. Liverpool 549 - 116.0

3. Wigan 345 - 107.5

4. Stockport 337 - 117.5

5. Cheshire East 327 - 87.4

6. Bolton 316 - 112.7

7. Wirral 280 - 87.3

8. Blackpool 271 - 192.9

9. Trafford 266 - 114.4

10. Salford 258 - 106.6

11. Sefton 251 - 91.8

12. Cheshire West and Chester 246 - 74