From vibrant cities to cosy villages, there’s somewhere to suit everybody’s taste here in the United Kingdom – and, as such, it can be difficult to decide where to make your home.
Thank goodness, then, for Grant Thornton’s Vibrant Economy Index.
Their report for 2016 has unveiled the happiest and most vibrant UK locations to live and work in, based on a number of economic factors, as well as social ones.
These metrics included:
- Prosperity – do we have an economy that is producing wealth and creating jobs?
- Inclusion and equality – does everyone benefit from economic growth?
- Resilience and sustainability – does the economy have a neutral effect on the natural environment, and is the built environment a resilient place to live in?
- Health, wellbeing, and happiness – are people healthy, active, and living fulfilling lives?
- Dynamism and opportunity – is the economy entrepreneurial and innovative, with a population that has skill sets to drive future growth?
- Community, trust, and belonging – do people living in the environment feel safe, engage in community activities, trust local businesses and institutions, and feel included?
This in-depth analysis meant that, while a lot of money is concentrated in cities like London and Birmingham, they did not easily secure spots on the list.
In fact, they – alongside Manchester and Liverpool – performed poorly in terms of health, wellbeing, and happiness levels.
As such, greener and more relaxed areas, such as Cambridge, Oxford, Richmond-upon-Thames, and Guildford, stole the top spots on the list.
The top 15 best places to live and work in the UK
Average house price: £436,932
Average salary: £35,000
Average house price: £502,452
Average salary: £32,000
Average house price: £783,959
Average salary: £48,829
Average house price: £492,532
Average salary: £38,200
- South Cambridgeshire
Average house price: £324,797
Average salary: £37,469
Average house price: £404,897
Average salary: £27,362
- Windsor and Maidenhead
Average house price: £539,115
Average salary: £28,000
- Vale of White Horse
Average house price: £
Average salary: £26,500
Average house price: £437,825
Average salary: £35,000
- Reigate and Banstead
Average house price: £515,647
Average salary: £33,400
- St Albans
Average house price: £311,987
Average salary: £43,500
Average house price: £499,434
Average salary: £29,988
Average house price: £412,426
Average salary: £40,000
Average house price: £344,000
Average salary: £30,000
Average house price: £700,000
Average salary: £33,000
Speaking to the Mail Online about the results, Sacha Romanovitch, chief executive of Grant Thornton, said: “The index demonstrates that if we want to create places that provide opportunity for all, we need to focus on more than headlines about economic prosperity.
“Higher employment levels or strong business growth need to translate into the creation of communities that are more inclusive and equal, where populations are healthy and happy.”
She added: “While economic performance is fundamentally important to the future of the UK, we need to ensure that this prosperity can also positively impact other factors including health outcomes, housing affordability, personal wellbeing and social inclusion.”
Just in case you were wondering, the least vibrant economy in the UK is Redcar and Cleveland, followed by Blackpool, Barking and Dagenham, and Boston.
That shout help you narrow down your search for a home at least a little bit, eh?