On 29th March the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question on youth services in rural areas:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the report State of Rural Services 2018, published by Rural England in February, and in particular of the impact of the closure of youth centres on young people; and what impact access to services has on young people’s engagement in risky behaviour compared to those living in urban areas.
Lord Ashton of Hyde: Government recognises the value of spaces for young people in both rural and urban areas: a place of trust and safety, that provides high quality information, advice and guidance alongside positive activities that can help young people to develop skills, improve wellbeing and participate in their communities.
Local authorities are primarily responsible for allocating public funding to youth services in their area. We believe they are best placed to determine local priorities. The Government has made over £200bn available to local authorities to spend on local services over this Spending Review period.
The Government does not hold data on the impact of access to youth services on young people in rural compared to urban areas.