Revealed: 50 best places to live in UK


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