Region’s towns and cities have far less saved for a rainy day than Scots or southerners

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SAVERS IN Yorkshire are lagging behind the rest of the country in the amount of spare cash they have stocked up, according to data from Britain’s biggest building society.

Leeds, Halifax, Hull and Bradford have been placed in the 20 postcodes in the country with the lowest average balances held in individual savings accounts (ISAs).

The average ISA holder in Leeds has almost £5,000 while the residents Halifax, Bradford and Hull typically have around £11,000 stored away for a rainy day.

At the other end of the spectrum, people living in the London borough of Harrow were found to have the highest savings piles in the country in Nationwide’s league tables, with an average of £15,476.

Residents in other parts of London and the surrounding commuter belt as well as those in Scotland dominated the list of locations with the richest ISAs, with Bromley, Ilford, Kingston-upon-Thames, Edinburgh, Dumfries and Galloway, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead featuring highly.

The annual Isa allowance is currently set at £15,000. All of this can be saved, tax-free, in cash, or all in stocks and shares, or any combination of the two.

Earlier this week, figures from the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) showed that people saved 57 per cent more into their ISAs last year than they did in 2013, with £13.1bn placed in the tax-free accounts in 2014. The boost was partly put down to new rules introduced last July gave people a more generous and a more flexible ISA allowance.

And Nationwide has predicted average ISAs to grow further, with its latest round of research coming ahead of changes to the annual limit, which will increase when the new tax year starts in April.

Nationwide’s divisional director of savings, Richard Napier, said: “According to our own internal data, it is savers in Greater London, the South East and Scotland that are really making the most of their Isa allowance, with the average Isa balance in these regions higher than anywhere else in the UK. With the annual allowance increasing to £15,240 in April, we would hope to see those average balances increase over the next 12 months.”