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These are the 50 top places for best quality of life in the UK

Do you live in any of them?

By Rebecca Shepherd, 25 January 2017
These are the 50 top places for best quality of life in the UK

People who live in Winchester have the best quality of life in the UK, according to a new study.

Residents in Winchester enjoy the best quality of life in the UK, benefiting from above average weekly earnings, low crime rate and good health

The study, by Halifax bank, looked at a range of factors to determine the places with the best quality of life, including life expectancy, health, crime, education, broadband access, population densities and the weather.

Halifax said that among the reasons why the picturesque town came out on top was that gross weekly earnings of £824 were 27% higher than the UK average of £646.

The pretty town also has the lowest crime rates in the country, and according to the Office for National Statistics, figures indicated the adult population was among the happiest, most satisfied, most content and least anxious in the UK.

Martin Ellis, economist at Halifax, said: “Looking across a wide range of indicators considered by our research, residents of Winchester in Hampshire enjoy the best quality of life in the UK, benefiting from a combination of above average weekly earnings, low crime rate and good health.

“On the other hand, there is a cost associated with a high quality of life with house prices in Winchester 9.7 times the average annual local income – significantly higher than the UK average of 7.2.

“With more and more emphasis being placed on achieving a good work-life balance, the 2016 Halifax Quality of Life Survey includes a leisure category for the first time.

“This has had an impact on the rankings, especially at the top.”

Coming in second was the Orkney Islands because of factors including low crime rates, low amounts of traffic and low population densities. And in third place was Wychavon in Worcestershire.

Thirty-two of the top 50 best places to live are in southern England, the study found.

1. Winchester

2. Orkney Islands


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3. Wychavon


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4. Derbyshire Dales


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5. Hambleton


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6. South Cambridgeshire


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7. Purbeck

8. St Albans 


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9. Wokingham


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10. Chiltern 


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11. West Oxfordshire 

12. South Hams 

13. South Oxfordshire 

14. Tonbridge and Malling

15. West Dorset 

16. South Northamptonshire 

17. Waverley 

18. Shetland Islands 

19. Horsham

20. City of London

21. Stratford-on-Avon

22. Eden

23. Windsor and Maidenhead

24. Malvern Hills

25. Mole Valley 

26. Hart

27. Mid Devon

28. Rutland

29. Ryedale

30. Lichfield

31. Richmond upon Thames

32. Rugby

33. Richmondshire

34. Guildford

35. Uttlesford

36. Maldon

37. Monmouthshire

38. Babergh

39. Vale of White Horse

40. Rushcliffe

41. Harrogate

42. Mid Sussex

43. Reigate and Banstead

44. Westminster

45. Wiltshire

46. Harborough

47. East Hertfordshire

48. West Berkshire

49. Wycombe

50. Aylesbury Vale