Orkney Children 'Best Quality Of Life'
28 August 2015, 12:18
A cold and wet corner of the country with limited access to fast broadband has been named as the best place to bring up children.
The survey of local area districts by Halifax found that youngsters in the Orkney Islands off the north coast of Scotland have the highest quality of life in the country.
Small primary school classes, high school spending per pupil, little traffic and a low population density made the popular tourist destination a great place to grow up.
Adults living on the archipelago are also likely to be in employment and are among the happiest, most satisfied, least anxious and content in Britain.
Yet, just 56% of households have access to fast broadband - well below the national average of 86%.
Northern Scotland dominated the the table, with the Shetland Islands and Western Isles occupying spots two and three.
The Western Isles have an average of 69 vehicles per square kilometre - compared to the national average of 9,459 - while schools on the Shetland Islands spend more than double the national average per pupil.
School children on the island have £10,821 on average spent on them - above the national average of £4,560.
Martin Ellis, economist at Halifax, said: "While the Orkney Islands take the top spot in the 2015 Halifax Children's Quality of Life survey, the story is as much about Scotland - with the Shetlands and Western Isles also making up the top three positions.
"Children in these areas benefit from low primary school class sizes, low pupil to teacher ratio in secondary schools, excellent exam results and some of the highest school spend per pupil.
"The best places outside Scotland are where children are brought up in an environment of high employment and where adults rate their personal well-being as high - which bodes well for their upbringing.''
The South East occupied 11 out of 50 places in the league, including Winchester, Chichester and Tonbridge, but local area districts in the North East and London failed to make the top 50.
Researchers calculated a quality of life index using a variety of variables to assess all 377 local authority districts in Britain.