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The space/time trend of unemployment in Britain by office areas, 1978-1990.

National Information System counts, showing deviation from expected levels of unemployment in 852 amalgamated office areas on equal population cartograms — software by author on an Archimedes computer.

A very distinctive pattern emerges of “Celtic Fringe” turning into “Inner City” decline, against a backdrop of a ring of relatively good fortune forming around the capital. At the height of the early 1980s depression even that ring is seen to perform badly, and places such as Liverpool do relatively well (though in absolute terms their roles are reversed — showing a limitation of using this type of statistic). The pattern is well defined, and the area getting worse most quickly is central London.