THE Orkney Islands have been crowned the best place to live in Britain.
The picturesque set of islands off the north east of Scotland were awarded a top spot in a Halifax quality of the survey.
Richmondshire in North Yorkshire took second place this year and Rutland, Leicestershire, came third.
The survey was carried out by Halifax and it took into account the housing market, environment, education, health, personal wellbeing and leisure.
Orkney’s breathtaking landscapes, high employment levels and low crime rate ensured it claimed top spot.
Hambleton in North Yorkshire took fourth place and Eden in Cumbria landed fifth.
More than have of the 50 best places to live in Britain are outside the South of England, with eight in the East.
The East Midlands, West Midlands and Yorkshire and the Humber regions each have five areas in the top 50.
The Northwest and Scotland both have two areas on the list.
The South East had a number of areas in the region landing a spot in the top 50.
Only two areas of London, Westminster and Richmond upon Thames, made it in the top 50.
Parts of the South tend to do well on employment, life expectancy, health, earnings and the weather, while the North tend to fare better for housing affordability, smaller primary school sizes and low traffic flows, according to the survey.
Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said: “Orkney has consistently been considered one of the best places to live in the UK and Orcadians will be delighted to hear they have now taken the crown.
“Its remote location may not be for everyone, but this comes with the benefit of having high employment, low crime rates, smaller class sizes and more affordable housing.
“While the South East continues to have the most locations in the top 50, we’ve seen Northern areas perform particularly well on education while they also benefit from lower house prices when compared to average earnings.”
The top 50 places to live in the UK in Halifax’s 2019 quality of life survey
1. Orkney, Scotland
2. Richmondshire, Yorkshire and the Humber
3. Rutland, East Midlands
4. Hambleton, Yorkshire and the Humber
5. Eden, North West
6. South Oxfordshire, South East
7. Cotswolds, South West
8. Ryedale, Yorkshire and the Humber
9. St Albans, East of England
10. Derbyshire Dales, East Midlands
11. Vale of White Horse, South East
12. Waverley, South East
13. Hart, South East
14. East Hertfordshire, East of England
15. Westminster, London
16. Winchester, South East
17. Rushmoor, South East
18. Uttlesford, East of England
19. Wychavon, West Midlands
20. Harborough, East Midlands
21. South Cambridgeshire, East of England
22. Rushcliffe, East Midlands
23. Ribble Valley, North West
24. Surrey Heath, South East
25. Wokingham, South East
26. Harrogate, Yorkshire and the Humber
27. Babergh, East of England
28. West Oxfordshire, South East
29. South Buckinghamshire, South East
30. Windsor and Maidenhead, South East
31. Warwick, West Midlands
32. Elmbridge, South East
33. Chichester, South East
34. Stratford-upon-Avon, West Midlands
35. Lichfield, West Midlands
36. Malvern Hills, West Midlands
37. Rochford, East of England
38. Chiltern, South East
39. Shetland, Scotland
40. Richmond upon Thames, London
41. West Berkshire, South East
42. Basingstoke and Deane, South East
43. South Hams, South West
44. Fareham, South East
45. St Edmundsbury, East of England
46. Wycombe, South East
47. Mid Suffolk, East of England
48. Monmouthshire, Wales
49. Daventry, East Midlands
50. Selby, Yorkshire and the Humber