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The Observer: "Payday lenders and pawn shops change the face of Britain's high streets"

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"For the high streets which best typify Britain's economic gloom, look no further than the main shopping strips in Chatham in Kent and Walthamstow in east London. Both are riddled with shops offering payday loans, pawnbroking services and the opportunity for consumers to turn their jewellery into cash in a flash.

The 960 metres of Walthamstow high street boast, if that is the right word, 11 shops offering consumers different ways to access money fast – and at a high cost. ... Stella Creasy, Walthamstow's local MP, says: 
"I think if you mapped toxic high streets, those with lots of betting shops, 24-hour off-licences and payday loan shops, it would resemble a map of the areas of deprivation and poverty. The idea that these firms are not targeting poor areas of the country is hokum."

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