The best places to live in the UK revealed


Note to subs adds paragraphs 6-10 with quotes from Wadhurst Warriors, deletes paragraphs 23 and 24 above to adjust copy

Wadhurst in East Sussex has beaten 71 other places to be named the best place to live in the UK by The Sunday Times.

The judges said that the small market town offers “virtually everything necessary for modern life in miniature.”

It was praised for its good schools, convenient transport links, variety of high street shops and being surrounded by “stunning scenery”.

The Wadhurst Warriors, a group of parents who began fundraising for the town’s primary school in 2004 and now raise money for the entire town, were hailed as the “stars of the show”.

The judges also praised the city of fewer than 5,000, the smallest winner of the award in its 11-year history, for the many activities available for children, including a farmer’s market, clubs, classes, and community movie theater in the community hall.

Wadhurst Warriors president Chris Poulton told the PA news agency that the group organizes events such as parties, fireworks nights and putting up Christmas decorations, and the money raised is used to help people in town who need it. such as the Girl Guides and the local school.

He said: “We believe Wadhurst is the best place to live and that’s because we all work together to make it a place where everyone can be supported.

“We don’t do it for ourselves, we do it for the community.

“Being recognized is great, but the more we can give back to the community, the better.

“Acknowledgment can simply be someone coming up to us and saying thank you.”

A spokesman for the parish council told the PA news agency: “This is really exciting news. Wadhurst is a charming, beautiful place to live with a great community feel.

“What makes it really special is the community. We have many different village clubs and a very active community.

“We are all helping each other and during Covid that really came to the fore, with many groups helping to get food and medicine to people.

“I would tell someone thinking of moving here that it is a great place to live, it has the best of both worlds.

“You have easy access to towns and cities, but if you want a rural lifestyle, it’s perfect.”

Paula Lee, 58, who owns the @ONE home goods store on the high street, told the PA news agency: “I completely agree – it’s a lovely place to live and has a good sense of community.

“I’m not surprised, I think it would be very difficult to find a better place, certainly in the southeast.

“There are some really lovely shops, it’s a well rounded main street – there’s a good independent butcher, grocery stores and good community spirit.

“The course in this area is simply exceptional. There are many walks and many sporting activities in an area of ​​outstanding natural beauty.”

Sam, 50, who runs Wadhurst Flowers but declined to give his last name, said: “It’s a lovely place to live. It still maintains a village feel, even though we are only five miles from Tunbridge Wells.

“Residents use their main street, which is fantastic.

“It’s a beautiful area of ​​outstanding natural beauty and there are trains to London and the coast. We are very lucky.”

Ruthin in Denbighshire was named the best place to live in Wales, Dunkeld in Perthshire was named the best place to live in Scotland and Donaghadee in Co Down was ranked first in Northern Ireland.

One winner was also selected for each region of England.

The Sunday Times Best Places To Live guide is published online on Friday and an edited version will be available in the newspaper on Sunday.

Prince Charles visits Poundbury
Poundbury in Dorset, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, has been named one of the best places to live in the UK (Chris Ison/PA)

This year’s list includes more new entries than ever before.

They include Poundbury, a village on the outskirts of Dorchester in Dorset that was planned by King Charles and is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.

Critics at the time called it a “toy town,” but the judges said its affordable housing, renewable energy and emphasis on walkability suggest it was ahead of its time.

Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle and Sheffield have all returned, suggesting people may no longer be rushing to the country as cities come back to life after coronavirus restrictions are lifted.

Expert judges visited all the locations, evaluating factors ranging from the quality of schools and transport links to broadband speeds, culture, access to green space and the health of the main street.

Helen Davies, editor of Best Places To Live 2023, said: “When times are tough, where we live matters more than ever.

“An attractive environment, good neighbors and a comfortable home are the best defenses when the stresses of modern life seem overwhelming.

“This guide is a celebration of the towns, cities and villages that are a fantastic place to live in 2023 from Orkney to Felixstowe, from Chew Valley to Manchester city centre.

“Whether you’re downsizing, changing, or moving up the property scale, there will be a place to fit you.”

– The full list can be found online at


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