This year has made many of us reconsider our lifestyle choices. With working from home set to remain the new normal for the foreseeable future and a quarter of the UK back in lockdown, the place we choose to live has never felt more important.
If you’ve been contemplating leaving London or any other big city in favour of somewhere more peaceful, you’ll probably be interested in a new study revealing the UK’s most “thoughtful” places to live.
Though “thoughtfulness” is obviously a pretty difficult concept to quantify, the folks at Bloom & Wild compiled their rankings using hard data in five key categories. These were: the town or city’s number of registered charities, number of volunteering opportunities, number of community gardening schemes, its recycling rate and its level of electric car ownership.
Swindon, home to 452 registered charities and 21 community gardening groups, came out on top with an overall “thoughtfulness” score of 79 out of 100. The Wiltshire city is also home to more than 7,500 ultra low emission vehicles.
Right behind with scores of 78 were nearby Bath, where the recycling rate is an impressive 59.1%, and Oxford, which is home to 347 registered charities.
Among the UK’s major cities, Manchester performed best with a thoughtfulness score of 64 out of 100. It’s home to 118 volunteer spaces and 48 community gardens, and has a recycling rate of 40.1%.
Check out the top 10 below.
Marisa Thomas of Bloom & Wild said of the results: “It’s incredible to see the level of thoughtfulness so many communities embody. Everywhere, people have been giving back in any way they can. What really stands out to me is the huge number of opportunities there are to give back. From volunteering for your local charity to joining a community gardening group – there’s lots we can all take inspiration from.”
Thomas also said she was pleased to see “a big rise in environmental efforts, like recycling rates and eco-friendly cars on our roads increasing”.