Suffolk Coastal one of the healthiest and happiest districts to live in England

Woodbridge's Tide Mill in the afternoon sunshine. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Woodbridge's Tide Mill in the afternoon sunshine. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

New research has placed Suffolk Coastal as one of the top ten happiest local authorities to live in.

The Vibrant Economy Index carried out by business and financial advisory firm Grant Thornton UK LLP measured 324 local authority areas in England on a broad range of indicators.

These areas included health, wellbeing and happiness, prosperity, inclusion and equality, community, trust and belonging, resilience and sustainability.

Of these Suffolk Coastal came 7th nationally in the health, wellbeing and happiness category with Mid Suffolk nearby in 13th.

Topping the category was Waverley in the South East with Hart and Richmondshire in Yorkshire coming in 2nd and 3rd.

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Overall Suffolk Coastal placed 45th in the Vibrant Economy Index, making it the highest placing council in Suffolk.

St Edmundsbury came 101st, Mid Suffolk 115th, Babergh 182nd, Ipswich 196th, Forest Heath 244th and Waveney at 266th respectively.

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Cambridge topped the index for the 5th year running followed by Camden and Westminster.

Suffolk Coastal leader, Ray Herring said: “It is fantastic that Suffolk Coastal has been recognised as being such a brilliant place to live, work and visit.

“This area offers a unique mix of a great quality of life, outstanding environment and vibrant communities, which all encourage a health, happy lifestyle.

“But what makes this place really special is the people, including the businesses and community groups who help nurture and look after our natural environment of countryside and coastline.”

Some of our other districts placed well in other categories.

St Edmundsbury made the top 20 of most improved authorities, moving up 47 places since 2013.

Ipswich ranked above average in the prosperity category placing 95th but only reached 251 for inclusion and equality.

Rob Thomson director at Grant Thornton’s Ipswich office, said: “The latest Index findings show a polarised performance across Suffolk with some areas performing strongly across a range of factors, particularly health, wellbeing and happiness, whilst others fall below average.

“We need to work towards a more consistently positive picture across our county where there is a better balance between economic success and resident satisfaction.”

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