And the most desirable place to live and work in the UK is…

And the most desirable place to live and work in the UK is… somewhere you may not have heard of, according to new research by the Royal Mail.

Bebington, Wirral, (postcode: CH63) has retained its top spot as the most desirable place to live and work, according to an update of the Royal Mail’s 2015 study to find the most desirable places in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.

The study, which was undertaken by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), looked back at the past two years and calculated the most desirable areas based on a range of factors including good schools, access to green spaces, good employment prospects, working hours, affordable housing and average commuting times.

The research was conducted by reviewing a number of data sources at the local level, including the 2011 Census, the Department for Communities and Local Government’s Indices of Multiple Deprivation, General Land Use database and numerous releases from the Office for National Statistics.

Bebington retained its top spot as the most desirable place. Located close to the River Mersey, Bebington residents enjoy the ideal balance of living close to work, having access to good schools and high employment rates.

NR6, Norwich in the East of England makes an appearance at number two, after IP5, Ipswich slips five places to seventh position. The inclusion of NR6 in Norwich leads an increase in the number of areas in the south included in the top ten. In 2015, there were just three Postcodes from the south compared to six this year. Good local schools and lower unemployment helped facilitate the change.

In Scotland, three-quarters of the most desirable places to live and work are around Glasgow. Residents have shorter working hours and shorter commute times as well as access to local services, better schools and lower crime rates.

In Wales, this year has seen a huge rise in the number of Cardiff Postcodes compared to 2015. Indeed, more than half of the most desirable places to live and work in Wales this year are located around Cardiff, while in 2015, just two locations (CF24 and CF64) featured in the list.

In Northern Ireland, the top locations remain around Belfast and Craigavon which benefit from easy access to local services, high employment rates and a strong education system. BT65 – Craigavon, County Armagh – retains its top spot, for the second year, thanks to a good work-life balance.

According to the Royal Mail, areas around large northern cities and along the south coast in England enjoy best work-life balance.

Photo: Flickr

And the UK’s dream place to live is…

18th November 2016

The Isle of Skye is the dream place for Britons to live, according to one new poll.

The study, conducted by Rightmove, quizzed 24,000 people on where they would most like to live in Britain. While you might expect it yield a haphazard bunch of locations across the country, though, the research found that The Isle of Skye was the named the most desirable place to set up residence.

Rightmove’s Research Manager Abiola Oni comments: “The nation clearly want to retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city and settle down in some of the most beautiful places around Britain, from as north as the Isle of Skye to as south as the glitzy town of Salcombe.

The picturesque island is certainly one of the more relatively affordable places to live, with an average house asking price of £231,000, far below the price of an average home in London.

Indeed, the second most desirable place to live is the seaside resort of Woolacombe, followed by the market town of Callington. St Ives makes up the top five, with the top 10 completed by Keswick, Pembroke, Padstow, Salcombe, Ambleside and Newquay.

Six of the top 10 were in Devon and Cornwall, with all 10 located in either the North West, South West, Wales or Scotland. All of them, meanwhile, are islands, coastal towns or designated areas of outsanding natural beauty.

The affordability, on the other hand, is a secondary factor: Salcombe in Devon is eighth in the list, despite an average home price of £635,083. Apart from Padstow (£421,290) and Ambleside (£431,669), however, all of the places have average house prices of under £400,000, with Pembroke the most affordable in seventh place, at an average of £169,969.

“It’s interesting that none of the areas are in the highest priced regions of Britain, London and the South East, likely because the appeal of some of the big cities is the good job options and transport links rather than moving for the amazing scenery,” adds Oni.