Oxford has been ranked as the top performing city in the UK to live and work for the fourth year in a row according to a nationwide study published on Tuesday.
The annual Demos-PwC Good Growth for Cities 2019 index ranked 42 of the UK’s largest cities by looking at areas such as jobs, health, work-life balance, house-affordability, travel-to-work times, and environment.
Oxford came out on top, followed by Reading and Southampton, scoring highly in the areas of work-life balance, income, skills, and transport.
Bradford has been recognised as the most improved city. This was “driven by jobs, work-life balance and skills amongst its 25+ year olds” as well as a large fall in unemployment rates which were measured at 4.1% in 2018 compared with 10% in 2015.
Wealthy southern cities performed most highly, with seven of the top 10 in the south of England. The report found that the “South East leads the way, with most cities scoring well for income, health and environment.”
But it’s good news for Scotland too as Edinburgh and Aberdeen both feature in the top 10 with “income, jobs and skills driving growth.”
London came in at number 16, one place lower than last year, reflecting its lower scores in the areas of housing affordability and ownership, work-life balance, and transport.
PwC chief economist John Hawksworth said: “Our long term analysis shows that good growth improvements across the UK since 2005 have been largely driven by skills and new business creation. As the economy and world of work transforms, ensuring people are equipped with the digital and other skills they need for future jobs will remain critical to sustaining these improvements.
“But there are also less positive long-term trends, particularly relating to deteriorating housing affordability and ever longer commuting times. These issues will require sustained investments in affordable housing supply and transport infrastructure in order to address.”
Top 10 cities to live and work in the UK