Which are the ten happiest cities in Britain?
People from a North Yorkshire spa town are the happiest, while Barking and Dagenham residents are least content
Harrogate has been named the happiest place to live in Britain for the third year in a row, based on a survey by the property website Rightmove.
Residents of the picturesque North Yorkshire spa town rated it highly in terms of general upkeep, safety and pride in the local area. "Anyone who lives here knows exactly how great Harrogate and its fabulous lifestyle is," says the Yorkshire Post.
With quaint tea rooms, gardens and beautiful countryside, the town is popular among tourists and locals, with house prices above the national average.
"We are surrounded by some of the UK's most beautiful scenery, have fantastic shopping and a wide variety of restaurants and cafes," borough council leader Richard Cooper told The Guardian.
"Residents benefit from a great quality of life with low unemployment, low crime and excellent local services," he added.
Asked what makes him happy in Harrogate, Sir Gary Verity, chief executive of the Welcome to Yorkshire tourism agency, said: "The quality of the gardens and all the planting, which give residents and visitors so much pleasure and, of course, a good cup of tea at Bettys [renowned local tea rooms]."
Harrogate sits alongside Shrewsbury, Ipswich, York and Chester in the top five, with only three of the ten happiest places to live located in the south of England.
At the other end of the scale, residents in Barking and Dagenham are reportedly the most unhappy, with the area ranking the worst for community, area upkeep, safety, amenities and neighbourliness.
But the leader of Barking and Dagenham council disputed the survey results, claiming the area was flourishing. "Of course there are challenges but I know we have the drive and ambition to make this borough a better place to live for everyone," said Darren Rodwell.
The ten happiest places to live:
7. Llandrindod Wells
8. Hemel Hempstead
The ten unhappiest places to live:
1. Barking and Dagenham
6. Tower Hamlets