People living in Northern Ireland are the most content in the UK, a major survey into Brits’ happiness has revealed.
Meanwhile, stressed out Londoners not only have the lowest scores when it comes to life satisfaction, but the highest levels of anxiety, according to research by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Overall however, despite “political change and uncertainty” over the last year - including Brexit and a shock general election - there have been small improvements in both happiness and life satisfaction in the UK.
The average Brit now rates their satisfaction with life at 7.68 out of 10 - an increase of 0.02 compared to the same time last year.
The results fall in line with recent trends, with levels of wellbeing having increased every year since the survey began in 2011.
However, it was those living in Northern Ireland who shot to the top of the table, rating their satisfaction with life at 7.88 out of 10, compared to 7.68 for those in England and Scotland and 7.65 for people living in Wales.
Londoners, in comparison, gave an average rating of 7.54.
When asked how worthwhile their lives are, people living in Northern Ireland gave a score of 8.08 out of 10 - much higher than the UK average of 7.9.
They also gave above-average ratings of their daily happiness and ranked their anxiety at a lower level than anywhere else in the UK.
Across the UK, levels of anxiety felt by participants remained relatively stable compared to recent years, with the average score coming in at 2.90 out of 10.
ONS’s Matthew Steel said some people may be surprised by the survey’s results, considering that the research covered a “period that has seen political change and uncertainty”.
Average happiness ratings across the UK:
7.7 out of 10 for life satisfaction
7.9 out of 10 for feeling that what you do in life is worthwhile
7.5 out of 10 for happiness yesterday
2.9 out of 10 for anxiety yesterday
“It’s worth noting that employment rates rose during the period covered by this report, and other ONS analysis showed people perceiving an improvement in their own financial situations and in the overall economy,” he explained.
“These are factors we believe may account for some people’s increased sense of personal well-being.”
The survey, which was launched as part of a flagship policy by David Cameron, has been carried out since 2011 in an attempt to assess the wellbeing of the nation alongside economic data like GDP.
Last year’s survey also ranked Northern Ireland as the most content place in the UK, while nationwide those aged 65 to 79 were found to be the most satisfied with life.
Meanwhile, the 2016 results revealed that Londoners were the least satisfied, ranking their own happiness at 7.51 out of 10. Those living in the capital also reported having the highest levels of anxiety.