Rugby has made it into the list of the best places to live in the UK (Leamington hasn’t). The survey of towns across the UK by Halifax placed Rugby at number 20 (above Leamington). Top of the list was Hart in Hampshire.

The annual Halifax quality of life study, released over the weekend, looked at factors including health, earnings, crime rates and life expectancy. Within the study, many southern areas in England scored highly in areas such as labour market and health, while more northern areas tended to score better for educations and having more affordable homes.

Top 20 places:

1 Hart, Hampshire

2 Orkney Islands, Scotland

3 Rutland, East Midlands

5 Winchester, Hampshire

6 Wokingham, Berkshire

7 Waverley, Surrey

8 Craven, North Yorkshire

9 Richmondshire, North Yorkshire

10 Stratford-on-Avon, Warwickshire

11 Uttlesford, Essex

12 Ryedale, North Yorkshire

14 South Oxfordshire

15 St Albans, Hertfordshire

16 Tonbridge and Malling, Kent

17 East Hertfordshire

18 City of London

19 Chiltern, Buckinghamshire

20 Rugby, Warwickshire

We are thrilled with this news as Rugby has been subject to many improvements and expansions recently including three controversial new retail parks, a “restaurant quarter” opening in the town centre and the highly anticipated “Houlton” development which will see circa 6,000 new houses being built over the next 10 years.

Rugby is, as all small towns, undergoing challenges and changes. We are holding up well against the national average for commercial voids and retail “health” and, when one shop closes in Rugby, another one opens soon after. It’s hard to see a glut of vape shops, hairdressers, sandwich shops, barbers and, dare I say it, estate agents, as a good thing, but these industries rely on disposable income, and if people have it I for one would rather they spend it locally!

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