Ipswich: Cities Outlook report says town is one of the best places to live in the UK

A sunny winter's day on Ipswich Waterfront

A sunny winter's day on Ipswich Waterfront

Ipswich is one of the best places to live in the UK, according to a highly-respected new report published today.

It has one of the highest employment rates in the country, is one of the fastest-growing and greenest towns in the country, and has some of the fastest broadband links going.

And, to top it all, people who live in Ipswich are becoming happier with their lot than those in any other place nationwide – apart from Aldershot.

The rosy picture is painted in the “Cities Outlook” report by the Centre for Cities think tank.

The report looks at the economic and social prospects of 64 cities and towns across the UK – and especially their relationships with London, which dominates the economic life of the country.

Ipswich is one of the smallest towns in the survey – and it doesn’t come out so well in every category.

It has one of the lowest rates in the country for GCSE results and one of the smallest manufacturing sectors in the country, a far cry when the town was known for what it made during the heyday of Ransomes, Cranes, and Ransomes and Rapier.

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However, altogether there is a very positive message for Ipswich in this report, which MP Ben Gummer said showed that the town was emerging from a very long and deep recession.

He said: “I’ve said for some time that the town has tremendous potential.

“It is growing, and must be allowed to grow to exploit its potential. This does, however, really show the need to press ahead with the development of the waterfront and other parts of the town.”

David Ellesmere, leader of the borough council, added: “Particularly encouraging are: the growth in the employment rate – twice the national average – where we have overtaken Norwich and, as a marker for future success, the coverage of super-fast broadband where we have 20% better coverage than the national average and where Norwich is in the bottom 10.

“Intriguingly, given the perception that there is nothing Ipswich people like more than a good moan, we are number one for people reporting they are happy with their lives with one of the biggest increases over the last year.”