When looking at the quality of life people are enjoying, you will find considerable diversity within the cities and regions of England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
If you are planning to relocate then this can make it quite a challenge to identify the best place to live to get the standard of life you are hoping for, so it is good to do your research and see, based on up to date data, where there is good quality of life to be found in the UK.
Whether you are looking to move or would just be interested to see how the place you live in now compares with the rest of the UK, then uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index is an interesting resource than can provide some good insight into quality of life in the UK in 2015.
To create our quality of life index – a league table of the 138 statistical regions of the UK ranked from best to worst for overall quality of life – we analysed official data for a variety of things that have a significant effect on life in a given region, such as jobs, incomes, cost of living, and other non-financial factors like mobile phone coverage, classroom sizes and broadband speeds.
As well as enabling us to rank the 138 regions for 2015, we can also compare this table to the results of our similar study from 2013, to see where the up and coming parts of the UK are and which places have declined in quality of life in the past two years.
West Sussex in the South East of England is a region that has actually lost a significant number of places since 2013, going from a respectable 23rd place to sit mid table at 71st. Here are some of its statistics:
Employment is very good in West Sussex with 79% of the population working. 40% of people in West Sussex work normal full time hours between 35 and 45 hours per week.
Incomes are above average in West Sussex with the gross weekly income of the average person there in 2015 at £484.33 – this is high UK wide but low for the South East. Disposable income is well above average with the average household having £19,972 available to spend for the year.
House prices in the city of West Sussex are high, though could be considered moderate for the South East at an average of £261,853.57k in 2015.
People in West Sussex have an above average life expectancy at 80 for men and 84 for women.
Life expectancy is an influential factor that insurance companies use to determine life insurance premiums. You can check our advice guide on how to get a cheaper life insurance policy.
The weekly grocery shop for a household in West Sussex in 2015 averaged at £63, which is among the highest in the UK. Car insurance premiums are high too, at £556.40. Petrol is also above average at 118p, making this an expensive place if you run a car.
Even though, the insurance premiums are high, there are certain steps you can take to find the best car insurance deals for you.
Other Important Factors
When it comes to technology and convenience, West Sussex scores fairly well on mobile phone coverage at 95%, and has reasonably good broadband speeds at 27.7Mbps on average.
Use our broadband postcode checker to see which deals and what speeds are on offer in your area.
West Sussex has a high cost of living and high house prices, which offset some of its positives like good technology to put it mid-table for quality of life.
More to life than rankings
At uSwitch, we know that there is more to life than rankings, stats and figures, and our Qualify of Life Index merely highlights the vast differences in the experiences of people across the UK.
Whether you're living in the best city or the worst, millions of households in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland face financial struggles including rising energy bills and credit card debt. That's why it's more important than ever for households to assess their budgets, and uSwitch.com offers a great way to start.
Below you can find ways to save on everything from car insurance to mobile bills.
Place to Live 2015 — Where did your region rank?
About the research
The uSwitch.com study assessed 138 local areas (NUTS3 regions) for 26 factors such as salaries, disposable household income, and the cost of essential goods including food bills, fuel costs and energy bills. The study also factored in lifestyle issues like hours of sunshine, working hours and life expectancy to ensure a full picture of the quality of life in each NUTS3 region.
For more about the study's methodology, read the full press release .