Hadleigh among best places to live in UK, survey finds
Hadleigh has featured in a national guide as one of the best places to live in the UK – based on factors including house prices and schools performance.
A survey by The Sunday Times included 12 towns from the East of England, with Hadleigh ranked at number six.
Deputy mayor Peter Matthews said: “I’m not surprised. We have a good community spirit in Hadleigh and there are more than 60 different community groups with clubs for children and the elderly, although we could probably do with more for youth groups.
“We have a good range of businesses and lots of small, independent retailers and no empty shops.
“I think it’s great to get recognition like this for being very nice place to live.
“We have a swimming pool, health centre, good schools and, on a summer’s day, you can take a lovely walk by the riverside.”
He added: “It’s a very stable environment and long may it stay that way.”
Top of the list of the 12 best places to live in the East of England was Chelmsford, with Bungay, Orford, Woodbridge and Wymondham in Suffolk also featuring, along with Norwich in Norfolk.
The survey said that the East of England was becoming popular with Londoners because the region represents good value in terms of house prices and is within commuting distance of the capital.
On Hadleigh’s appeal, the survey said: “Hadleigh High School is rated good but proximity to the grammars in Colchester is a big draw for parents.
“Come Saturday morning, the red-trouser brigade can be seen strolling out of the newsagent with the financial papers, a sure sign that Hadleigh is now firmly in commuter territory.”
Hadleigh High Street estate agent James Morton-Smith, of Hunters, says the town has seen property values increase by 18 per cent over the last three years.
He said: “About two thirds of new buyers come from urbanised areas in Essex, Greater London and the home counties.
“It’s a traditional English town and lifestyle. We have lots of independent stores, along with good facilities and, if you live in Hadleigh, you are only minutes away from the open countryside.”