Sheffield named among 100 unhappiest places in UK, but things are getting better

Sheffield is one of the 100 least happy places to live in the UK, according to new research, but it is getting happier.

Tuesday, 17th December 2019, 1:13 pm
Updated Friday, 20th December 2019, 4:49 pm

The city ranks 294th out of 391 local authorities across the UK for happiness in the latest results from the Government’s personal well-being survey, which has been running since 2011.

It fares better when it comes to life satisfaction, for which it is 206th in the table; and how worthwhile people feel what they do is, placing 237th; but anxiety levels in Sheffield are among the highest in the UK, with the city in 109th spot for that measure.

People across the country were asked to rate on a scale from one to 10 how happy they felt, how satisfied they were with life, how anxious they were and how worthwhile they thought the things they do in their life were, with a score of nought being ‘not at all’ and 10 being ‘completely’.

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The Peace Gardens in Sheffield city centre

The average score for happiness in Sheffield during 2018/19 was 7.45, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics.

That was below the UK mean of 7.56 but represented an improvement from the 7.33 recorded in 2018/17 and 7.23 the previous year.

Sheffielders rated their life satisfaction at 7.73, slightly above the UK-wide score of 7.71; and gave a score of 7.87 for how worthwhile they felt, which was just below the nationwide figure of 7.89.

They put their anxiety levels at 3.00, which, while at the lower end of the scale and having fallen from 3.24 in 2011/12, is well above the UK average of 2.87.

Sheffield is at least the second happiest place in South Yorkshire, according to the table, below Barnsley on 7.48 but above both Doncaster (7.37) and Rotherham (7.35).

The happiest place in the country is Ribble Valley in Lancashire, with a score of 8.30, while the glummest is Surrey Heath in the south east, with a rating of 6.71.

For the year ending in March 2019, the average happiness rating for the UK increased slightly from 7.52 to 7.56.