Wales is worst and West is best

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The Independent Online

It may be among the most deprived regions in Britain, but residents of the South-west are the happiest people, a survey tomorrow will reveal. The residents of Devon and Cornwall rate their lives at more than eight out of 10 for satisfaction, shows an exclusive NOP poll for The Independent on Sunday.

It may be among the most deprived regions in Britain, but residents of the South-west are the happiest people, a survey tomorrow will reveal. The residents of Devon and Cornwall rate their lives at more than eight out of 10 for satisfaction, shows an exclusive NOP poll for The Independent on Sunday.

Wales, at the other end of the scale, emerges as the gloomiest place in Britain, proving even more miserable than London and the South-east.

NOP asked 1,000 adults across Britain to rate their level of contentment with life by giving it marks out of 10. The West Country came out smiling, with an average score of 8.1. The three most miserable regions averaged 7.4, Wales coming bottom.

Liz Barnes, 49, lives with her husband Tony, 50, and their four sons in Corsham, a village between Bath and Chippenham. She moved from south Wales 20 years ago. "Here we have all the advantages and few disadvantages," she says. "It's not too isolated, but not too big - I can see farmland from my bedroom window but Bath and Bristol are within reach. It's clean and friendly. And there's a feeling of security."

Lyn Cullen, 48, runs the Lobster Pot Hotel and Restaurant in Newquay in Cornwall with her husband Tom, 51. They moved to the South-west from Sutton Coldfield in Birmingham 18 years ago and have never regretted it. "It's an easier way of life; we wanted to get out of the rat race and give our kids a better chance." The best thing about Newquay, she says, is the scenery. "We can't wait to get home, put the kettle on and sit down with our views."

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