The Top 10 ‘happiest’ and ‘unhappiest’ places in the UK

Happiest and unhappiest places UK – Using a dozen ways to measure how more than 38,000 locals feel about where they live – including how proud people felt about their property, neighbourliness, and nearby amenities – the report suggests that those in Lincoln are the most house-proud while residents of Hereford feel the safest about where they live. Swansea and Aberdeen top the happiest places to live in Wales and Scotland respectively.

“As a nation obsessed with property, our homes represent far more than simple bricks and mortar,” said Rightmove director Miles Shipside. “What elevates a house to a home is an often complicated relationship of the physical property itself, the emotional sense of well-being it provides and how safe and socially-rooted we feel in our communities.”

Harrogate tops the list on the basis that its residents feel ‘happy’ across a wide range of categories, even though it did not rank highest on any single one. “Average asking prices in Harrogate are up 5.6% year-on-year,” said Shipside, “outperforming the national average of 1.2% and North Yorkshire average of 0.4%, indicating that there is demand to live in the UK’s happiest place.” Stockport takes the number two spot.

The research also suggests that people living in the north are happier than those in the south. After the top two places, the rest of the ten happiest towns and cities (in descending order) are Ipswich, Exeter, St Albans, Kingston-upon-Thames, Bath, Worcester, Bromley and Truro.

Nine of the bottom ten locations for happiness are in Greater London (the tenth is Dudley) whose residents ranked their living arrangements especially poorly for space, pride, safety and neighbourliness.

 

 

Happy at Home Index: The 10 ‘happiest’ and ‘unhappiest’ places in the UK

 

Top 10 Bottom 10
Harrogate

1st

North London

101st

Stockport

2nd

Dudley

102nd

Ipswich

3rd

West London

103rd

Exeter

4th

North West London

104th

St Albans

5th

Enfield

105th

Kingston upon Thames

6th

South East London

106th

Bath

7th

Ilford

107th

Worcester

8th

East Central London

108th

Bromley

9th

Croydon

109th

Truro

10th

East London

110th

 

  • Harrogate comes out on top in Rightmove’s Happy At Home Index for 2013 – a survey of nearly 40,000 people, measuring how the British public feels about where they live

 

  • Grim up North? Rightmove finds that Northerners are happier about where they live than Southerners, with nine of the ten ‘unhappiest’ locations in Greater London

 

  • Rightmove quizzed people on twelve separate measures about the place they live, covering their home (investment, well-being, pride and costs) their community (safety, amenities, recreation and neighbourliness) and their property (décor, space, contentment and value)

 

Welcome to Harrogate; the UK’s happiest place to call home

Yorkshire’s official visitor site describes the Harrogate district as being ‘one of the most spectacular areas of England with attractive towns and villages, imposing historic houses, castles, abbeys, beautiful countryside and a host of other natural and man-made attractions’. With that description it’s not hard to picture why Harrogate comes out on top as the UK’s happiest place to call home.

 

Shipside adds: “Average asking prices in Harrogate are up 5.6% year-on-year, outperforming the national average of 1.2% and North Yorkshire average of 0.4%, indicating that there is demand to live in the UK’s happiest place.”

The Harrogate scorecard

 

Décor

Space

Contentment

Value

 
 

103

104

103

103

 
             
 

Investment

Well-being

Pride

Costs

 
 

107

99

103

98

 
             
 

Safety

Amenities

Recreation

Neighbourliness

 
 

114

104

112

108

 
           
The index explained  

 

Rightmove identified 12 measures which contribute to the overall level of happiness we feel with where we live. The measures cover a broad range of factors that affect our view of where we live and are divided into three categories: your property, your home and your community. Responses for each of the 12 measures are averaged to provide both a category score and an overall score – the ‘Happy at Home Index’. The table below summarises the 12 factors that make up the index with the highest and lowest ranking town or city.

 

HAHI HAHI
Score Top ranking town/city

Factor

Lowest ranking town/city Score

Your Property

100

Cleveland

DÉCOR

Ilford

91

103

Aberdeen

SPACE

London East

88

104

Ipswich

CONTENTMENT

London East

88

91

London East Central

VALUE

Redhill

100

Your Home

103

Blackburn

INVESTMENT

London East

88

103

Bromley

WELL-BEING

Dudley

95

101

Lincoln

PRIDE

Dudley

95

103

Aberdeen

COSTS

London East Central

91

Your Community

100

Hereford

SAFETY

London East

88

104

Kingston-upon-Thames

AMENITIES

Inverness

101

104

Kingston-upon-Thames

RECREATION

Croydon

91

104

Exeter

NEIGHBOURLINESS

Croydon

91

105

Harrogate

‘Happy at Home’ Index

London East

88

 

In total 38,624 responded to Rightmove’s Happy At Home Index survey.

The national average for each category and the total overall score were indexed to 100. Harrogate (105) is 5 index points above the national average Happy at Home score. East London (88) is 12 index points below the national average Happy at Home score.

Regional rankings

 

Yorkshire

 

Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

Yorkshire Harrogate

1st

1st

105

Yorkshire Halifax

38th

2nd

101

Yorkshire Wakefield

42nd

3rd

101

Yorkshire York

54th

4th

101

Yorkshire Leeds

57th

5th

101

Yorkshire Huddersfield

66th

6th

100

Yorkshire Doncaster

70th

7th

100

Yorkshire Sheffield

75th

8th

100

Yorkshire Bradford

84th

9th

99

North West
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

North West Stockport

2nd

1st

105

North West Blackpool

13th

2nd

103

North West Bolton

14th

3rd

103

North West Blackburn

16th

4th

103

North West Warrington

18th

5th

103

North West Carlisle

19th

6th

103

North West Lancaster

27th

7th

102

North West Chester

32nd

8th

102

North West Preston

43rd

9th

101

North West Crewe

59th

10th

100

North West Liverpool

67th

11th

100

North West Manchester

83rd

12th

99

North West Wigan

89th

13th

98

North West Oldham

95th

14th

97

East Anglia
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

East Anglia Ipswich

3rd

1st

104

East Anglia Norwich

15th

2nd

103

East Anglia Colchester

24th

3rd

102

East Anglia Peterborough

31st

4th

102

East Anglia Cambridge

34th

5th

102

 

South West

 

Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

South West Exeter

4th

1st

104

South West Bath

7th

2nd

103

South West Truro

10th

3rd

103

South West Bournemouth

21st

4th

102

South West Dorchester

23rd

5th

102

South West Taunton

30th

6th

102

South West Salisbury

40th

7th

101

South West Plymouth

41st

8th

101

South West Gloucester

49th

9th

101

South West Swindon

58th

10th

101

South West Bristol

78th

11th

99

South West Torquay

87th

12th

98

South East
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

South East St Albans

5th

1st

104

South East Guildford

12th

2nd

103

South East Tonbridge

25th

3rd

102

South East Hemel Hempstead

28th

4th

102

South East Brighton

29th

5th

102

South East Southampton

37th

6th

102

South East Milton Keynes

39th

7th

101

South East Reading

51st

8th

101

South East Canterbury

52nd

9th

101

South East Portsmouth

53rd

10th

101

South East Oxford

55th

11th

101

South East Chelmsford

56th

12th

101

South East Redhill

61st

13th

100

South East Southend on Sea

62nd

14th

100

South East Dartford

65th

15th

100

South East Stevenage

71st

16th

100

South East Luton

76th

17th

100

South East Watford

77th

18th

99

South East Slough

93rd

19th

98

South East Rochester

96th

20th

97

 

Greater London

 

Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

Greater London Kingston upon Thames

6th

1st

104

Greater London Bromley

9th

2nd

103

Greater London London – West Central

79th

3rd

99

Greater London London – South West

88th

4th

98

Greater London Sutton

97th

5th

97

Greater London Harrow

98th

6th

96

Greater London Twickenham

99th

7th

96

Greater London Romford

100th

8th

96

Greater London London – North

101st

9th

96

Greater London London – West

103rd

10th

95

Greater London London – North West

104th

11th

94

Greater London Enfield

105th

12th

94

Greater London London – South East

106th

13th

93

Greater London Ilford

107th

14th

91

Greater London London – East Central

108th

15th

91

Greater London Croydon

109th

16th

91

Greater London London – East

110th

17th

88

West Midlands
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

West Midlands Worcester

8th

1st

103

West Midlands Shrewsbury

26th

2nd

102

West Midlands Telford

33rd

3rd

102

West Midlands Wolverhampton

36th

4th

102

West Midlands Hereford

68th

5th

100

West Midlands Stoke-on-Trent

72nd

6th

100

West Midlands Northampton

80th

7th

99

West Midlands Coventry

82nd

8th

99

West Midlands Birmingham

86th

9th

99

West Midlands Walsall

91st

10th

98

West Midlands Dudley

102nd

11th

95

Wales
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

Wales Swansea

22nd

1st

102

Wales Llandudno

47th

2nd

101

Wales Newport

48th

3rd

101

Wales Cardiff

69th

4th

100

 

North East

 

Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

North East Darlington

20th

1st

103

North East Middlesbrough

35th

2nd

102

North East Hull

44th

3rd

101

North East Newcastle upon Tyne

60th

4th

100

North East Durham

63rd

5th

100

North East Cleveland

64th

6th

100

North East Sunderland

92nd

7th

98

East Midlands
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

East Midlands Derby

11th

1st

103

East Midlands Lincoln

45th

2nd

101

East Midlands Leicester

50th

3rd

101

East Midlands Nottingham

74th

4th

100

Scotland
Region Town / City

National HAHI

Regional HAHI

HAHI Score

ranking

ranking

Scotland Aberdeen

17th

1st

103

Scotland Inverness

46th

2nd

101

Scotland Glasgow

73rd

3rd

100

Scotland Edinburgh

81st

4th

99

Scotland Kilmarnock

85th

5th

99

Scotland Paisley

90th

6th

98

Scotland Falkirk

94th

7th

97

Ref:

  • The Independent 
  • Rightmove


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