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The Independent: New wealth gap opens as urban small firms outpace rural rivals

The politically-charged debate over the economic North-South divide conceals a wider gulf between business fortunes in urban and rural areas, according to new research. The startling surge in activity among rural small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) that was central to the 1980s economy, has collapsed in the last decade. Research by Cambridge University shows that differences in economic performance within the UK are more complex than a simple North-South split.