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The Rebuilding Britain Index

The Rebuilding Britain Index collected and analysed tens of thousands of pieces of data over 9 waves of research. Standing back, what did we learn?

A look back and setting the direction of travel

The Rebuilding Britain Index (RBI) was launched in early 2021, at a time when the UK was still firmly in the grip of Covid-19. Our first report in April 2021 launched as schools in England, and outdoor venues and nonessential retail, hairdressers, public buildings, and museums were reopening across the UK. Among the impacts of the pandemic were a decline in GDP by 9.7% in 2020, the steepest drop since records began in 1948, as well declining health and educational outcomes – with those communities already experiencing some of the poorest outcomes in the UK the hardest hit. Against this background, Legal & General launched the RBI to explore how the UK could recover and rebuild.

A snapshot of rebuilding 2021-2023

Overall index scores for all measures from April 2021 to May 2023

The data we have collected shows that while the overall picture has remained largely unchanged since our first report in April 2021, there has been some movement in certain areas.

See more index scores in our full report

Key lessons for the next phase of rebuilding Britain

There are a number of crucial learnings and recommendations apparent to ensure meaningful movement towards better, more equal outcomes across the country.

Strategic UK growth sectors can deliver regional economic opportunities

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Our Investments: Kao Data

We’ve invested into Kao Data, a state-of-the-art data centre platform that services businesses along the London to Cambridge corridor. This corridor is the fastest growing economic region in the country and a specialist area for life sciences laboratories, pharmaceutical multinationals, scientific research institutes and AI start-ups.

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Our Investments: Sero Technology

If the target of net zero emissions by 2050 is to be met, green tech will have a crucial role to play. That’s why Legal & General made a multimillion-pound investment in Sero Technologies, whose digital tools help landlords, mortgage lenders and housebuilders plot a path to net zero for their homes.

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Our Investments: Bruntwood SciTech

Bruntwood SciTech, the UK’s leading specialist property provider, was founded by Legal & General and Bruntwood in 2018 to support the growth of the life science and tech sectors. In 2023, it secured £500 million of additional investment and welcomed the UK’s largest local authority pension fund, Greater Manchester Pension Fund (GMPF), to expand the partnership.

Regeneration works best when it addresses a range of factors and is done in partnership with local communities

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Our Investments: Cardiff Central Square Regeneration

Legal & General’s landmark £450m Cardiff Central Square regeneration is the largest privately funded regeneration scheme in Wales providing a new bus station, a government hub which is home to 4,000 public servants, 318 Build to Rent apartments and much needed new office space for the city, including a new BBC Wales HQ.

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Our Investments: Newcastle Helix

Newcastle Helix has brought together a community of academics, industry leaders, businesses and world-class researchers, creating knowledge-based jobs for future generations, and delivering 450 new homes for the local community.

High quality, plentiful housing matters

Disparities between regions of the UK, in terms of home building are significant. The highest house prices and rents in the UK are typically found in the South-East, specifically in London. For instance, the average house price in the UK was £290,000 in January 2023, while the South-East was £400,000, and London, at £530,000. These prices reflect greater demand, stemming from higher economic productivity and people migrating to those places, yet supply has not kept pace.

The North of England, Wales and Scotland, barring a few urban outliers, observe a different trend. There are more left behind communities in these regions and fewer economic opportunities, meaning that house prices have not seen the same increases as the South of England.

Learn about the nation's housing pressures

Overall housing index scores (wave 9)

Strong regional economic hubs can support thriving local communities

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Our Investments: West Midlands Combined Authority Partnership

In 2022 we signed a partnership agreement with West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) Mayor, Andy Street, committing to invest £4billion in regeneration, housing and levelling up across the West Midlands.

Since the start of 2021, Legal & General, through the Rebuilding Britain Index, has collected thousands of data points and has captured sentiment from 45,000 UK households. The findings have been consistent: the social and geographic inequalities that the UK has been looking to address, appear broadly unchanged.

It is our perspective that the lessons highlighted within this report can be used as a blueprint – by the investment community, government and agencies at all levels – to shape a meaningful movement towards a UK where opportunity, and positive outcomes, are more equally distributed.

Read the full report