The brewing town of Burton upon Trent is desperately in need of regeneration aid but misses out on funding given to the region's big cities, Ministers have been warned.
Burton, in Staffordshire, still suffered from unemployment, poverty and poor exam results despite significant help from the Government and EU, said local MP Janet Dean (Lab Burton).
But in a House of Commons debate, she warned that it did not benefit from the huge grants going to cities such as Birmingham or nearby Stoke.
She said: "The need to address the problem of pockets of deprivation in Burton upon Trent has been recognised with millions of pounds of investment in the past ten years."
Schools had improved, new childcare services had been introduced and unemployment among young people was down.
But she continued: " I believe that we have only just commenced the regeneration of Burton upon Trent.
"We need a prolonged and sustained effort for at least another ten years if we are really to address some of the key challenges that face the local community."
Youth unemployment was still above the national average and only 46.1 per cent of pupils obtained five good GCSE grades, compared with 53.7 per cent nationally.
She added: "In the 1980s and 1990s, the borough lost more than 9,000 jobs as a result of restructuring of the brewing industry.
"Although, thankfully, the industry appears to have reached a period of stability after many years of uncertainty, a recent economic forecast study undertaken by East Staffordshire Borough Council suggests the loss of another 3,500 manufacturing jobs in the period up to 2020."
"Regeneration strategies that focus on the urban areas of the West Midlands and north Staffordshire have little impact on my constituency because of the distance from those major conurbations."
Local Government Minister Keith Hill replied: "Burton should continue to make its case to take real advantage of all of the opportunities available.
"It needs to continue to exploit its position as a gateway linking the M6 in the West Midlands with the M1 in the East Midlands.
"The Government is committed to continuing to support regeneration and neighbourhood renewal. We are getting better at targeting the pockets of deprivation that she mentioned, and we will continue to do so."