10 November 2020

The best areas in England for families to thrive

2 min read

Meera Khanna, Consumer PR Manager
Meera Khanna

Corporate PR Manager - Protection


  • Sussex has been revealed as the best area in England for families to thrive;
  • London takes second place as the best area for a family to thrive. Thriving is determined by where a family will have the best quality of life;
  • South East is the best region in England to thrive;

Choosing where to raise a family can be one of the biggest decisions any parent can make.

While some people choose to raise their families in the area where they grew up, many others look to relocate based on the quality of life, and to give their family the best option to thrive.

To help make this decision a little easier for parents, Royal London has analysed crime level data, community engagement, education standards and the number of family households for areas up and down the country. Each factor was then weighted and scored to reveal the best areas in England for families to thrive.

Sussex revealed as the best area in England for a family to thrive, followed closely by London.

The historic county of Sussex has been revealed as the best area in England for a family to thrive.

Known for its stunning coastline and national parks, Sussex scored highly in the study thanks to its high number of community schemes and its high education rates.

Coming in a close second place is London.

It has great education rates and has seen an 8% increase in family households residing in the area over the last 6 years according to ONS1 data.

The South East had the most areas in the top ten ranking making it the best region in England to thrive.

The top ten areas can be seen in the table below:

Ranking Area The number of neighbourhood watch schemes in area Crime data in region Number of university degrees gained (2018) % change in family households living in the area Combined Weighted Score
1 Sussex 3552 728639 2014304 5% 2.619
2 London 1655 918731 2930393 8% 2.460
3 Gloucestershire 1786 378383 1079158 5% 2.213
4 Lincolnshire 1833 398489 799117 4% 2.058
5 Thames Valley 1454 728639 2014304 5% 2.021
6 Surrey 1225 728639 2014304 5% 1.956
7 Hampshire 1224 728639 2014304 5% 1.955
8 Northamptonshire 1192 398489 799117 4% 1.875
9 Devon & Cornwall 547 378383 1079158 5% 1.860
10 Avon & Somerset 384 378383 1079158 5% 1.814

Mona Patel, consumer spokesperson at Royal London, said:

“Quality of life can have a big influence on families and their moving decisions. Our analysis shows Sussex with its high education rates and community schemes, as the best area for families to thrive in England.

“Parents want their children to enjoy an idyllic childhood, filled with carefree adventures, fun and friendship. And a lot of that is centred around the environment in which they grow up.  With the exception of London, the data shows that families are more likely to thrive outside of big cities.”

Full results can be seen here.


For further information please contact:

Meera Khanna, Corporate PR Manager - Protection

Notes to Editors


Data was captured from the following sources:

  • Neighbourhood watch data was sent from their press office on the 29/04/2020 (see ourwatch.org.uk)
  • Crime data taken from here.
  • Education rates refer to the number of university degrees gained within the area-  data taken from here.
  • Family household data taken from here.

To calculate the index, we first normalised the data categories individually from 0 to 1 and then summed the results.

On this scale, for

  • Crime – The area with the highest rate of crime would be weighted closer to 0 
  • Education - The area with the highest education rate is weighted closer to 1
  • Neighbourhood Watch schemes – The area with the highest number of schemes is weighted closer to 1
  • Family households – The area with the highest number of households is weighted closer to 1


1. https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/families/datasets/familiesbyfamilytyperegionsofenglandandukconstituentcountries#

About Royal London:

Royal London is the largest mutual life insurance, pensions and investment company in the UK, with assets under management of £139 billion, 8.6 million policies in force and 4,348 employees. Figures quoted are as at 30 June 2020.