The 20 Happiest Places To Live In Britain In 2021 – Revealed

Thinking about relocating? This is where you'll be happiest, apparently.
Northumberland tops the annual index of happiest place in Britain.
Vicky Duckworth via Getty Images
Northumberland tops the annual index of happiest place in Britain.

When you’re looking for a new area to live in, what are some things you take into consideration? The price of the home, the schools, local shops?

Maybe you should consider how happy the area will make you. According to the annual “happy at home” index, Hexham in Northumberland has been crowned Britain’s happiest place to live.

Now in its 10th year, the index compiled by Rightmove asked more than 21,000 people across Britain how they feel about different aspects of where they live.

The happiness measures include friendliness, community spirit, whether people feel like they can be themselves, nature and green spaces, opportunities locally to develop skills and amenities including schools, restaurants, shops and sports facilities.

Notably, Hexham has an average price tag on a house of £297,088, which is a quarter of the price of a house in Richmond, south west London, the areas that takes number two spot on the list, where the average house costs around £1.2m. St. Ives, which took last year’s top spot, is now at number eight.

Rightmove’s survey found that more than two thirds (69%) of people who had moved in the past year relocated to a different area. Nearly two thirds of these people (64%) reported feeling happier where they now live.

Additionally, eight in 10 (81%) of those who had moved from a town to a village said they now feel happier with where they live.

The Mayor of Hexham, Derek Kennedy is certainly feeling cheery, calling it a “fantastic accolade”.

“Hexham is thrilled to be awarded the happiest place to live in Great Britain. We are a small town with great history, Hexham Abbey and other historical buildings, and our market place is 800 years old. There is a wonderful community spirit, people are very supportive of one another,” he said.

He pointed to the open countryside and Hadrian’s Wall on the doorstep, as well as free live music events. “We have big ambitions to progress our sustainable development and we work with interested groups to enhance the town. We all know how great it is to live in Hexham, but to win this accolade is fantastic.”

The happiest places in Great Britain

(With the average asking price for a home / average monthly rental price)

1. Hexham, North East, (£297,088, £842)

2. Richmond-upon-Thames, London (£1,196,892, £3,235)

3. Harrogate, Yorkshire and the Humber, £353,624, £1,163

4. Hove, South East, £525,906, £1,879

5. Llandrindod Wells, Wales, £193,601, £445

6. Stirling, Scotland, £191,226, £877

7. Monmouth, Wales, £312,649, £929

8. St Ives, South West, £494,393, £1,150

9. Anglesey, Wales, £278,391, £776

10. Leamington Spa, West Midlands, £350,981, £1,203

11. Perth, Scotland, £167,160, £679

12. Hitchin, East of England, £491,223, £1,392

13. Woodbridge, East of England, £427,542, £1,129

14. Kendal, North West, £258,961, £837

15. Macclesfield, North West, £277,772, £981

16. Exeter, South West, £303,215, £1,234

17. Salisbury, South West, £318,806, £1,090

18. Horsham, South East, £433,892, £1,433

19. St Albans, East of England, £632,320, £1,888

20. Guildford, South East, £542,947, £1,913

General view of Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms in Harrogate
Lynne Cameron PA
General view of Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms in Harrogate

England, Ranked by Region

(with British rankings in brackets)

– East Midlands, Chesterfield (68)

– West Midlands, Leamington Spa (10)

– East of England, Hitchin (12)

– London, Richmond-upon-Thames (2)

– North East, Hexham (1)

– North West, Kendal (14)

– Yorkshire and the Humber, Harrogate (3)

– South East, Hove (4)

– South West, St Ives (8)

General View of the Harbour at St. Ives Cornwall
David DaviesPA
General View of the Harbour at St. Ives Cornwall

The Scottish Top 10

(with British rankings in brackets)

1. Stirling (6)

2. Perth (11)

3. Inverness (51)

4. Edinburgh (76)

5. Dundee (80)

6. Ayr (94)

7. Glasgow (98)

8. Kirkcaldy (141)

9. Paisley (149)

10. Aberdeen (156)

The Welsh Top 10

(with British rankings in brackets)

A view of Llandrindod Wells, Wales
Jacob King PA
A view of Llandrindod Wells, Wales

1. Llandrindod Wells (5)

2. Monmouth (7)

3. Anglesey (9)

4. Llandudno (58)

5. Bridgend (62)

6. Cardiff (82)

7. Wrexham (99)

8. Swansea (122)

9. City of Newport (203)

10. Caerphilly (206)