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Meeting the Needs of the Community: Chapter 3 Methodology

1. At the core of this report is an analysis of statistical data to establish the needs of Totton. The normal approach adopted by many organisations is to use that data to indicate what the needs of the local community are, which has been done in this case, but then expect government or business to magically implement solutions.

2. However, the type of statistical data produced can also indicate the way an organisation is thinking and operating. When Hunt and Finklestein were developing the social interpretation of disability (UPIAS, 1975) and Oliver developing the social model of disability (Oliver, 1981), they were aware that it was the way in which organisations operated, to the benefit of the organisation, that was disabling those with impairments.

3. The problem with organisations is that they are very secretive and trying to establish exactly what is happening is difficult. Therefore, whilst the statistics that are produced can give an indication of what is happening, they cannot be definitive.

4. This research began with an analysis of the 2011 Census data from the Office for National Statistics (2017). The Census data can be viewed at differing levels of Output Area (OA), which are geographic units used by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) for analysing Census data (Office for National Statistics, 2016). The smallest unit used by the ONS is the OA, which usually but not always consists of around 100 people or 40 households. Analysis of data at this level would have, however, been too cumbersome and would not have produced the general overview that was required.

5. The Output Area would also have created problems when comparing the 2011 census data with the Index of Multiple Deprivation which used the next level of Census data, the Lower Super Output Area (LSOA), which consists of around 3,000 people or 1,200 households. Use of this level of analysis made it much easier to analyse Totton at the political level, the political wards of the town.

6. The LSOAs are not given geographical names but numbers, and it was therefore necessary to establish the location of these LSOAs. This was carried out through the use of the web site Doogal (, 2019), which listed all the post codes relevant to that LSOA. The web page for each LSOA also provided a map of the area covered, which could then be transferred onto a Ordnance Survey Map using their online mapping service (Ordnance Survey, 2020).

7. Selecting what demographic data to examine was determined to a certain extent through trial and error, but ultimately came down to selecting those aspects of society which best described Totton, those being size of population, age, level of education, family structure, work, ethnicity, religion and health.

8. The Index for Multiple Deprivation (IMD) for both 2015 and 2019 is used as a measure of relative deprivation in small areas, the LSOAs, within each neighbourhood (Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, 2019) and ranks them against every other neighbourhood within England.

9. The index is made up of seven domains, some of which are further sub divided, and it was therefore possible to identify which LSOAs within Totton were facing specific issues. It must be stressed that with the exception of income and employment, which are based on the number of people claiming benefits, the indices do not identify what the problems are or how significant they are, only that there is a problem. It is therefore necessary to investigate further, by examining any underlying data, to evaluate what the IMD was indicating.

10. Therefore, with the income and employment domains, with the introduction of the Universal Credit having not been taken into account, it was necessary to examine the Department for Works and Pensions website to establish within the SO40 postcode the total number of applicants currently receiving the benefit, in order that an evaluation of the old data could be made.

11. Regarding the education domain, with several sources influencing the index, it was necessary to examine each individual element. This underlying data weas obtained from the individual school websites and the official government statistics. These sites provided details of the total number of children sitting exams or SATs in each school, together with details of the achievement of children who were receiving a pupil premium, and the destination of pupils six months after they left secondary school. Information on university attendance was obtained from the university regulator, the Office for Students, website.

12. Regarding the crime domain, the underlying statistics were obtained from the Economic Policy Centre. This information included a classification of the type of crime that was committed within any specific area of the town. With certain crimes, such as violence and sexual assault, local knowledge had to come into play in determining whether it was an assault on the street or domestic violence.

13. During the research for this report, it was suspected that some of the LSOAs, where issues surrounding education, crime, and income, may have had some association with the level of social housing in those areas. This meant that evidence had to be obtained to establish such a link.

14. Searching through the internet, a website was found that listed the majority of social housing located within Totton together with its postcode (UK Social Housing, 2020). With this information and the information held on Doogal, a spreadsheet of addresses and postcodes could then be matched to LSOAs, establishing the level of social housing in each area of Totton, and using regression analysis establish if there was any association.

15. To support the information obtained from the Index for Multiple Deprivation, structured and semi-structured interviews were conducted with as many key people within the community. These were conducted either face to face, email, or Facebook. Interviewees included the following and were obtained either because of direct contact or being in a public office.

  • · The Garage Youth Club

  • · Rev Dr Chris Steed (Rector, Totton Team Ministry)

  • · Mara Zimmermann (Youth Music Network)

  • · Kelly Price (Youth and Family Matters, Testwood Baptist Church)

  • · Rev Sally Marchant (Totton Team Ministry)

  • · T/Chief Inspector Ian Trueman (Totton Police)

  • · Lin Francis (Totton Town Council)

  • · Rev Trish Davis (Totton Trinity Church)

  • · PC Nicola Grindley (Totton Police)

  • · Phil Dykes (Diocese of Winchester School of Mission)

  • · Duncan House (Southampton City Mission)

  • · Tim Matthews (Love Church, Bournemouth)

  • · Rev Peter Toller (Rector, Dibden CofE parish)

  • · Gordon Tuck (Lead Pastor, Testwood Baptist Church)

  • · Mrs A Double (Chair Hounsdown School Governors)

16. Three questionnaires were conducted during this research. The first became a trial questionnaire. It was conducted at the 2014 Totton Fun Day and attempted to establish what facilities the interviewees believed were missing from Totton for specific age groups.

17. While the number of questionnaires completed was low in number, it began to give an indication of what residents of Totton were thinking. It was felt at the time that the number of responses did not adequately answer the basic question being posed, what can St Winfrid’s provide, and further questionnaires that could have been conducted in the centre of Totton were not possible due to work constraints.

18. Therefore, attempts were made to conduct interviews with organisations within Totton. These proved unsuccessful due to the method of communication i.e. by unsolicited email or communication through the organisation’s website.

19. The second main questionnaire was conducted in 2018 by two university students, upon the request of the Team Rector and the Project Manager. The reason for this request was that it was necessary to provide evidence that social isolation existed within Totton and that it needed to be addressed. The questionnaire was conducted at the local Totton Health Centre, Asda Totton and in Hythe.

20. Whilst the results identified what the church could provide, a more detailed examination revealed that more could have been done to investigate the underlying Census data for the whole town, and not just one ward.

21. The third questionnaire was conducted on Facebook through the Totton Facebook page, and consisted of asking members of that group what they liked and disliked about the town, together with what they would like to have in Totton. The purpose of this questionnaire was not only to test if using Facebook as a means of asking questions was practicable, but also to establish if there were any issues that residents of Totton felt were important but were not being addressed.

22. Throughout the whole of this research, reference is made to reports and minutes of meetings made to committees that would not normally be subject to public scrutiny. These documents were obtained either during email conversations with the Team Rector or as a member of the church’s District Church Council.

23. Also, the Freedom of Information Act was used to obtain any information from organisations that are governed by the act, especially the Heritage Lottery Fund. In line with the act, personal information contained within the documentation was redacted.

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