By Lucy Buglass
The UK is full of great places to live, whether you want a busy city or a peaceful countryside home. But do you live in one of the happiest places?
According to real estate website Rightmove, the Northumberland market town of Hexham is the happiest place to live in the UK, based on a survey they conducted.
Over 22,000 people responded to their Happy at Home index survey, which examined things like community spirit, how safe they felt, if they earn enough to live comfortably, and the friendliness of the locals.
On top of this, participants were asked about local facilities such as sports centres, arts and culture, shops, restaurants, doctors surgeries, schools and green spaces around them.
Hexham seemed to tick all of the right boxes amongst those surveyed, as it came out on top. The historical town has many independent shops, a farmers market and even Viking themed events.
It’s also home to Hadrian’s Wall and Hexham Abbey, which opens it up to lots of interest from tourists both near and far.
Bob Hull, mayor of Hexham said, “We have a really strong sense of community up here, which I think is a major reason why residents feel so happy living in Hexham.
"We have a community-owned cinema and a thriving theatre and arts centre. Our parks have won various Green Flag awards and we're just half an hour from Newcastle and a major airport.”
The average price for a home in Hexham is currently £254,237, making homes in the area nearly £50,000 less than the UK national average of £302,808. Based on this, it seems it could be one of the main reasons Hexham is considered the happiest place to live in the UK.
In second and third place was Harrogate, Yorkshire and Richmond-upon-Thames in London. Both of these locations are known for being very picturesque due to their green spaces, and there’s plenty for the locals to do.
Another Yorkshire town, Skipton, came in fourth places, followed by Welsh town Llandrindod Wells in fifth.
Sixth and seventh place went to Altrincham in the North West of England, and another Welsh town of Monmouth.
Dorchester in the South West came eighth, followed by South East town Sevenoaks in ninth place. Southport in the North West finished off the list in tenth place.
Speaking about the study, Rightmove’s insights expert Lydia Yao said, “This just goes to show that people place enormous value on living somewhere that they're proud to call home.
“Our results also show that having friendly neighbours and being able to be yourself remain hugely important factors when measuring the happiest places to live in Great Britain.”
Lucy Buglass is a Digital Writer specialising in TV, film and lifestyle content and has written for What's On TV, GoodtoKnow and Whattowatch.com. She's passionate about entertainment and spends most of her free time watching Netflix series, BBC dramas, or going to the cinema to catch the latest film releases. In her spare time, she writes film and television reviews for JumpCut Online and her own blog, Lucy Goes To Hollywood.
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