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Suffolk coast and Bury St Edmunds among country’s best places to raise family – report

13 October, 2017 - 14:41
Felixstowe promenade, part of the Suffolk Coastal district rated as good for raising families. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Felixstowe promenade, part of the Suffolk Coastal district rated as good for raising families. Picture: SIMON PARKER

The Suffolk Coastal area and St Edmundsbury are two of the best places in the country to bring up children, according to a report.

Although the top end of the quality of life survey by Halifax is dominated by the Scottish islands – the Orkneys, Shetlands and the Western Isles – East Anglia also is well represented in the Top 30.

Suffolk Coastal is top rated location for the East of England, and is placed at 18, with South Norfolk at 26 and the St Edmundsbury district council area in at number 29.

The Suffolk Coastal area includes Woodbridge and Felixstowe, and property hotspots such as Aldeburgh and Southwold.

Chelmsford is placed at 28th.

In the annual children’s quality of life survey Halifax said the Orkney Islands had held on to the crown since 2015, based on low primary school class size, high school spending per pupil, low population density and traffic levels.

Children in the Orkneys are also likely to be surrounded by adults in employment and with high personal wellbeing, it said.

The Shetland Islands came second, while Craven in North Yorkshire scooped third place.

Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax, said: “Measuring the best quality of life for children covers a range of factors including class size, spending per pupil and academic results.

“Kids in the top-ranked places will often be surrounded by a greater proportion of adults in full-time employment who also consider themselves to be happy.”

Mayor of Felixtowe, Nick Barber, said it was no surprise the coastal area rated highly.

He said: “I have lived in Felixstowe all my life, and after 50 years I am proud to be the mayor.

“It is a great place to live. I went to school here and my children have all gone to the local schools. I am really impressed with the Felixstowe Academy.

“There is a great community here and it is good for families. People look out for each other here.

“There is a great community spirit in the town, and lots of clubs and organisations

“People with an affinity for the town come here to retire because of the quality of life too.”

The top places are: Orkney Islands, Shetland Islands, Craven (Yorkshire & Humber) Western Isles (Scotland) and Hart (South East).

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