Uttlesford named family-friendly’

PUBLISHED: 16:12 19 April 2007 | UPDATED: 21:39 29 May 2010

PARENTS have named Uttlesford as the 10th best place in the country to raise a family. A nationwide poll by Reader s Digest has found that good state schools and a low crime rate were the most important requirements for a family-friendly area, closely fol

PARENTS have named Uttlesford as the 10th best place in the country to raise a family.

A nationwide poll by Reader's Digest has found that good state schools and a low crime rate were the most important requirements for a family-friendly area, closely followed by good hospitals and affordable housing.

Other significant factors were high employment and a low risk of flooding.

Uttlesford District Council Chairman, Alan Row, said: "This is very nice to hear. The local authority does care about the area and therefore does everything in its power to work to keep things nice for the people that live there.

Great Dunmow Town Mayor, Frank Silver, said: "I think it's really good news, but I'm not that surprised because people from all over the place come here to live," he said.

"In Dunmow, the people are friendly and we have nice shops. As long as the area doesn't get too overbuilt, I think it will continue to be a lovely place to live."

The authors who compiled the report said: "The winning areas are predominantly rural, peppered with small country towns - only three include towns with populations greater than 40,000."

To rank each area, factors were weighted, based on the importance that parents placed on them. They were then measured against statistical and demographic portraits of all local authority areas in England, Scotland and Wales, made using measurable data such as Home Office crime figures.

The report's authors then visited the winning areas to hear from local parents.

Mr Row added: "Uttlesford is the largest district in Essex but that comes with a low population so it is a nice place where people have lots of greenery around them."

In 2001, Uttlesford was named as the best place to live in Britain based on crime, employment, green space and affordable housing.

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