St Albans named among the best places to live in the UK

St Albans ranked third for weekly average earnings

St Albans ranked third for weekly average earnings - Credit: Archant

The St Albans local authority district has come eighth in a list of the 50 best places to live in the UK.

Upmarket Winchester, Hampshire, topped the list, followed by the Orkney Islands, Wychavon in Worcestershire, the Derbyshire Dales, and Hambleton, North Yorkshire.

The Halifax looked at a range of factors to decide which local authority districts had the best quality of life, including life expectancy, health, employment rates, education, crime, broadband access, the weather and population densities.

The number of pubs and the availability of health clubs and leisure centres also made their debut as categories in the latest annual report.

St Albans recorded the third highest average earnings in the UK at £1,018 per week, behind Kensington & Chelsea (£1,273) and City of London (£1,106). The UK average is £646.

32 of the 50 areas are in the south, with St Albans ranking second for East of England areas, behind South Cambridgeshire, which was in sixth place.

Martin Ellis, an economist at Halifax, said: “Looking across a wide range of indicators considered by our research, residents of Winchester in Hampshire enjoy the best quality of life in the UK, benefiting from a combination of above average weekly earnings, low crime rate and good health.

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“On the other hand, there is a cost associated with a high quality of life with house prices in Winchester 9.7 times the average annual local income – significantly higher than the UK average of 7.2.

“With more and more emphasis being placed on achieving a good work-life balance, the 2016 Halifax Quality of Life Survey includes a leisure category for the first time. This has had an impact on the rankings, especially at the top.”