Where's the best place to bring up a family? It's Bingham
Monday 11 November 2013
The market town of Bingham, Nottinghamshire (population: 9,000) has been named as the best town in England and Wales in which to bring up a family.
Bingham topped a study by Family Investments which examined factors including quality of schools, childcare provision, affordability, and crime levels.
Locations in the Midlands and the North of England have become more prominent as a result of more affordable housing in relation to southern counties, according to Family Investments which commissioned the survey.
The areas making up the remainder of the top 10 are Crowthorne, Berkshire; Winscombe, Somerset; Colyton, Devon; Oakham, Rutland; Wokingham, Berkshire; Poynton, Cheshire; Swanland, Yorkshire; Faringdon, Oxfordshire and Dunnington, Yorkshire.
These are followed by Longridge, Lancashire; Church Crookham, Hampshire; Yarm, Yorkshire; Woodley, Berkshire; Shebbear, Devon; Leyland, Lancashire; Sedbergh, Cumbria; Kirkham, Lancashire; Kesgrave, Suffolk and Buckingham in Buckinghamshire.
The study noted that 77 per cent of GCSE pupils in Bingham achieved A* to C grades compared with the national average of 43 per cent, while the area had a large variety of clubs and social groups and affordable house prices.
Kate Moore, head of savings and investments at Family Investments, said: "Bingham's combination of affordable housing, low crime and excellent local schools make it a winning location for bringing up a family.
"It's set in a relatively rural location but is a large enough town to have good amenities and the locals tell us there's a strong community spirit.
"Every parent will have a different idea about what makes the ideal location to bring up their family but we have tried to be as comprehensive as possible in measuring a huge range of factors to come up with a list which reflects the attributes parents tell us are most important.
"One of the most noticeable trends in this year's report was the increased number of locations in the Midlands and northern England compared to last year.
"This largely reflects the shift in house price trends over the past year resulting in increased affordability of property outside of the South of England. Lancashire for example scored well in this year's report with three of the top 20 postcodes located in the county."
The factors considered by the study included key stage two and four results, school inspection outcomes, quantity and quality of early years care, affordability of childcare, local crime figures and property affordability.
It also considered the availability of an existing population of parents with young children, parks and green spaces, leisure centres, zoos and farms and museums and theatres.
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