“Come friendly bombs, and fall on Slough! It isn’t fit for humans now…”
So goes the famous poem by John Betjeman. Since then, Slough has become a lazy byword for Britain at its greyest and dullest. Home to industrial estates and sprawling corporate headquarters, it was also where Ricky Gervais chose to set The Office, a TV show that did little to improve the Berkshire town’s reputation.
However, according to new research, Slough is actually the best place to work in the UK. Every year, recruitment and employee review website Glassdoor ranks the UK’s cities and towns on careers-related criteria. And this year, Slough has come out on top.
Slough was given a ‘Glassdoor City Score’ of 4.2, based on the number of job opportunities, affordability and job satisfaction in the towns. Workers enjoy a very respectable median base salary of £35,000 against a median home value of £390,654, and the average employee also rated their job satisfaction at 3.3/5.
At the time of writing, there were over 26,000 job openings in Slough, with mobile development, sales management and recruitment the most popular career paths.
Slough’s appearance at the top of the list is made even more surprising by the fact that it didn’t even make the top 25 last year. Dr Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor’s chief economist, said that the town’s sudden positive ranking can be attributed to the number of major corporations setting up headquarters there. Slough has the UK’s highest concentration of global HQs outside of London.
“With large multinational businesses establishing themselves in Slough, along with high average salaries and close proximity to major transport hubs such as Heathrow Airport, the Berkshire town has now emerged as a prime spot to live and work,” said Chamberlain.
Chamberlain added that the “M4 corridor”, which encompasses Slough as well as cities and town such as Reading, Swindon, Bristol and Swansea, is a particularly good place to move if you’re looking for a job in the technology sector.
“Towns and cities around this area offer pleasant environments, above average salaries and a lower cost of living, meaning an increased quality of life for employees,” he said.
London didn’t even make Glassdoor’s top 25 places to work in the UK, losing out to other cities such as Manchester (#2), Cambridge (#3) and Leeds (#7).
“Although people in London are generally satisfied, it has proven not only to be an expensive place to live, but also an ultra-competitive city in which to find a job,” said Chamberlain.
However, some people on social media seemed sceptical about Glassdoor’s findings.
Literally what does Slough have going for it? A few car show-rooms on Bath Road and the Mars factory.— bv (@velzzb) September 22, 2017
You can see the full rankings here.
Images: Pixabay / BBC / Rex Features