People living in Aberdeenshire have best quality of life in Scotland
For the fourth time in seven years, residents of Aberdeenshire appear to have the best quality of life in Scotland according to the annual Bank of Scotland Quality of Life Survey which is based on health and life expectancy, employment, school performance and climate.
Aberdeenshire makes it to the top because:
* Residents tend to be fit and well, 93.3% reporting good health
* There is a higher than average life expectancy (78.2 years)
* The employment rate is high, at 79%, with many residents enjoying high full-time weekly average earnings of £661, 13% above the Scotland average of £585
* The level of school qualifications is above the Scotland average as 83% achieve five or more SCQF level 4 awards compared to the Scotland average of 79%
* Residents also enjoy a relatively good climate – less rainfall per year (999 mm against the Scotland average of 1,289 mm) and slightly more weekly sunshine hours (25.5 hours against the Scotland average of 24.9)
Unfortunately, there is a cost associated with a high quality of life – house prices in Aberdeenshire are 5.7 times the average annual local income, significantly higher than the Scotland average of 4.5.
In second place is East Dunbartonshire, where full time gross weekly earnings are well above the Scotland average at £692 and the employment rate (74%) is also above the Scotland average (71%).
Similarly, 92% of East Dunbartonshire residents enjoy good or fairly good health and average life expectancy is 79 years. The proportion of school pupils achieving five or more SCQF level 4 awards is the highest in Scotland at 92%.
The Shetland Islands, last year’s winner, is third followed by East Renfrewshire. The Shetlands score highly on employment rate, low levels of crime as well as low population density and small average class room size. Whist East Renfrewshire performs very well on average weekly earnings, number of rooms, access to fast broadband, as well as residents reporting themselves in good health and with long life expectancy.
The report also reveals that:
* Houses in East Dunbartonshire, Western Isles and East Renfrewshire are the biggest in Scotland with an average of 4.9 rooms
* 100% of houses in East Ayrshire have central heating, the only area in Scotland with 100%
* The lowest population density in Scotland is in the Western Isles with just 8 persons per square kilometre and the Highlands (9 persons per/km)
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