Nigel Evans MP has hailed the Ribble Valley’s crowning as the happiest place in the UK, according to data from the Office for National Statistics. Ribble Valley residents were asked to score their happiness on a scale of 0 to 10, the UK voted on average 7.56, while the Ribble Valley voted 8.30.
The Ribble Valley’s seemingly untouched scenery and friendly population have long been an attractive proposition for those wanting to embrace the countryside lifestyle while wishing to have an array of award-winning independent shops, pubs and restaurants at their doorstep. Out of 61 schools in the Ribble Valley 57 scored ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ in their most recent Ofsted inspections, enticing more young families move into the area. The abundance of well-kept parks, countryside trails and a relatively low crime rate bolsters their desire to settle in the Valley.
Sitting just a short train journey from Manchester city centre and little over two hours from London, the Ribble Valley boasts an array of critically acclaimed restaurants; the Inn at Whitewell, Millstone at Mellor, Parkers Arms and Assheton Arms have all been selected in the AA’s ‘pick of the pubs’ in their 2020 pub guide. Award-winning shops such as Roy Porter’s butchers, Cowman’s and Byrnes’ wines merchant cement the Ribble Valley’s place as a perfect spot for gastro-tourists to explore.
Events such as the Ribble Valley Food Festival, Lancashire Show and Goosnargh & Longridge Agricultural Show have helped to boost tourism to the point that a staggering 4.4 million visitors per years visit the Ribble Valley – contributing £260.8m to the local economy in 2018.
Speaking about the survey, Nigel Evans said:
“It hardly surprises me that the Ribble Valley has been voted the happiest place in the UK, it is a truly remarkable place and one that I am proud to call my home. Here in the Ribble Valley we boast fantastic schools, great restaurants, pubs and amazing independent shops that people travel for miles to visit.
“But I must say that what sets the Ribble Valley apart is a true sense of community spirit. People here possess charming northern grit and say it as it is, meaning you are never in doubt as to where you stand – I think is this is beneficial for building a sense of community. No more is this evident as when I visit Remembrance Day parades each year and the whole community comes out in force to pay their respects; in Whalley they literally have thousands of villagers taking part in the procession.
“With the Ribble Valley booming and more shops, bars and restaurants opening we must brace ourselves for more tourists!”