It’s official: A great place to live

The Pantiles Tunbridge Wells Past Plans

Tunbridge Wells has been ranked as the 27th most desirable place to live in the UK, according to a survey by Halifax.

In a table dominated by towns situated in southern England, Tunbridge Wells has risen four places since last year when it was ranked 31st.

The survey of the top 50 towns for quality of life see each area ranked on a number of considerations, including residents’ health, life expectancy, personal well-being, employment, a low crime rate and good weather.

At the top of the list is the town of Hart in Hampshire, which has been placed first for the past five years.

Tunbridge Wells has beaten its close neighbour Tonbridge, which this year came in at 29th, a dramatic improvement on 2014 when it was ranked 42nd.

But despite Sevenoaks seeing an equally dramatic decline of 12 places it just managed to beat its Royal rival, by coming in at 26th.

The surrounding area of Wealden also scrapes it on to the list at 48th, while the West Sussex town of Horsham saw a massive boost to its ranking, coming 15th after previously not even making the list at 64th.

Martin Ellis, housing economist at Halifax, said: “Many areas in south eastern England also perform well in terms of average earnings, employment rates, health and the weather.

“But the south doesn’t have it all its own way, and there are areas in the north which score highly on school exam results and physical environment characteristics such as low population densities and low traffic flows.”

Cllr Jane March, portfolio holder for tourism, leisure and economic development, welcomed the town’s rise in the rankings.

She said: “If you live in the borough you will understand why Tunbridge Wells always features in the Quality of Life survey, and it’s good to see that we’ve climbed a few places this year.

“We have a wide range of beautiful parks and open spaces, cultural facilities and heritage attractions; as well as very good schools and a variety of shopping and restaurants to choose from.

“I am not complacent and recognise that there is always room for improvement but Tunbridge Wells is a great place to live and visit.”

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