Posted: 24.11.21 at 15:23 by Rory Poulter
Richmond-upon-Thames has jumped up the rankings in a national ‘happiness’ league to grab second place in the country and top in London.
The Borough, with it Royal Parks, the River Thames, historic buildings, such as Ham House and Marble House, good schools, theatres and sporting opportunities, is the only place in the capital to make the top 20.
The study has been compiled by property website, Rightmove, which also identifies Richmond borough as having the highest house prices in the top 20.
It puts the average figure at just under £1.2million, which may well put a smile on the face of home owners, however it has the effect of pricing out many young people and families.
Richmond has risen from tenth place last year to place second to the Northumbrian market town of Hexham, where the average house price is a far more modest £297,088.
Third went to Harrogate in Yorkshire with Hove, in Sussex, placed fourth.
Looking at London alone, the borough has now been identified as number one for seven years in a row.
In the wake of the pandemic, The Richmond Society has drawn up a manifesto for the area suggesting it should become a ‘Riverside Resort’ with a transformed high street, cuts to through traffic and protection for its waterfront.
The area’s global fame has been boosted by the hit Apple TV series Ted Lasso, which featured Richmond Green along with many local businesses and landmarks. It has also got its own version of the Monopoly board game.
The Happy at Home Index, in its tenth year, was conducted among over 21,000 people across Great Britain, and asks residents how they feel about where they live, as well as asking them to rank ten happiness factors
The ten factors include whether people feel a sense of belonging; are people are friendly and polite; can I be myself; nature and green spaces; a real sense of community spirit; artistic and cultural activities; opportunities to develop skills; non-essential amenities e.g. restaurants, shops; essential local services e.g. doctors, schools; sports and recreational activities.
Richmond’s primary schools are among the best performing in the country while access to Richmond Park, Bushy Park on our doorstep, along with major sporting venues such as Twickenham and The Stoop are major attractions. The area also scores well in league tables looking at population health and levels of cycling.
Rightmove said: “Feeling a sense of belonging and being able to be yourself in your area were the most important factors for people to be happy where they live
“Community spirit was even more important to people’s happiness this year.”
In March, Teddington was been named the best place to live in London by the Sunday Times. It was praised for its community spirit, independent shops and cafés, as well as its location near the Thames.
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