Letter to the Editor: In your article dated 28th October 2022, you describe the levels of deprivation faced by young people and families in Cinderford causing huge differences in expected life expectancy. 

I read the article with alarm. In 2022 it is unacceptable that we are still hearing this level of unfairness in life expectancy. 

Your article states that “boys raised in the poorest areas of the county (Cinderford) expect to live on average 8.7 years shorter than boys raised in the most deprived area”. 

The County Council have offered groups in Cinderford 11 per cent of a £1.5Million grant spread across the county. 

This is not an “exciting opportunity” as Cllr Nick Housden says. 

The £165,000 promised is a drop in the ocean for one of our most disadvantaged areas in Gloucestershire. 

We must demand proper investment from the Government. 

We need solutions on Housing, Education, Fuel Poverty and the Cost of Living. 

The disparity between the lowest and highest earners in the County grows. 

This is the root cause of unequal health outcomes in The Forest. 

The people of The Forest have always been proud and hardworking community, but we can not continue to be taken for granted by Westminster. 

Members of the County Council must demand more funding from Westminster. 

Connect our communities with proper transport, encourage new green and eco jobs, support people to live in 21st century conditions. 

When we see this investment, it will be a cause for celebration. 

Mike Crofts 

(Mike Crofts is a former soldier and the founder of criminal justice charity 3Pillars Project)