Strong communities at the heart of Britain's happiest places to live

Strong communities at the heart of Britain's happiest places to live [Photo: iStock]

The south of England has been shown to be the happiest place to live in the UK, as part of a new survey that highlights community spirit and access to fantastic amenities as the drivers of a content resident. 

Rightmove this week published the results of its latest Happiest Place to Live survey for 2017, which surveyed 17,000 people, asking them how pleased they are with the place they live. It was discovered that Leamington Spa in the West Midlands is currently the happiest town in the country, narrowly taking the lead from last year's winner, Leigh-On-Sea in the south-east. 

Overall, the south of England was found to be the happiest part of the country, with six of the top ten towns and cities located in London and the south. Tunbridge Wells, Epsom and Richmond upon Thames all featured in the top ten. 

The drivers of happiness in these towns was found to primarily be the sense of community that they manage to foster, while access to amenities is also an important factor. Things such as having good schools nearby and access to a doctor tend to be what people want most from their towns. 

Rightmove’s Research Manager Abiola Oni comments: “We’ve looked at the connection between each of the factors and what contributes to how happy people say they are overall, and it’s the people in an area and how someone feels about living there that makes the biggest difference.  

"So the strength of community spirit, people feeling like they belong and that they can be themselves are all more important than the services and money that they have, though these do still contribute to overall happiness.”

Other factors that can make people feel happy about their town include the fact that people feel like they belong in the town, which goes a long way to making sure they feel settled and at home.