If you’re in search of a little happiness it may be time to move to one of the country’s spa towns, as four feature in the top 10 happiest places to live in the UK.
According to Rightmove’s Happy at Home Index, Royal Leamington Spa, in the West Midlands, is the happiest place to live in the UK.
It was joined in the top 10 by the spa towns of Harrogate, Royal Tunbridge Wells and Epsom.
Meanwhile London was found to be one of the least happy places to live in the UK, with five places in the capital listed in the bottom 10.
The London Borough of Brent in north west London was voted the least happy place to live, followed by Barking and Dagenham, Newham, Croydon and Hillingdon.
More than 17,000 people across the UK took part in the Rightmove study, which asked residents how happy they are where they live, and also asked them to rank 12 happiness factors.
The 12 factors in the study ranged from how friendly the neighbours are and how much people feel they can be themselves, to how good the local services are.
Leamington Spa scored highly for friendly neighbours, a strong sense of belonging, a place where locals feel they can be themselves and good access to nature and green spaces.
The average asking price of a home in Leamington Spa is £330,848, which is almost £20,000 higher than a year ago. The national average asking price is currently £310,003.
Last year Leigh-On-Sea was named the happiest place to live, and this year it takes the runner-up spot, though the seaside town still scored extremely well for essential local services like schools and doctors, strong community spirit, good pubs and restaurants and friendly neighbours.
This year seven out of the top 10 happiest areas are in the South (Leigh on Sea, Tunbridge Wells, King’s Lynn, Epsom, Richmond upon Thames, Poole and Chichester).
But London did not fare well, particularly the London Borough of Brent, which took the bottom spot.
According to the Evening Standard, the leader of Brent Council, Muhammed Butt, did not accept the result, calling the survey “skewed”.
He told the paper: “Brent is a borough full of creativity, energy and potential. With food, fashion, music and arts from all over the world, we are one of the best places to live in London.
“Ofsted has rated 96% of our schools as ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’, and in a recent attitude survey 84% of residents said they were satisfied with their area as a place to live.”
Unsurprisingly Caroline Evetts, the Mayor of Royal Leamington Spa, is far more pleased with the results.
She said in a statement: “It is a tribute to the town’s community spirit that has lead Royal Leamington Spa to be voted the happiest place to live in the Great Britain.
“Royal Leamington Spa has it all, from our wonderful Regency buildings, impressive parks and gardens as well as a unique mix of high street shops and independent boutiques.
“Leamington people are welcoming with an impressive cultural community diversity that adds to the whole happy attitude that has no doubt put the town as the happiest place to live in Great Britain.”
You can see the top 10 happiest and top 10 least happy places to live in the UK below.
The top 10 happiest places:
1. Leamington Spa
6. King’s Lynn
8. Richmond upon Thames
Top 10 least happy places to live in the UK :
2. Barking and Dagenham