Newham is officially one of the happiest places in the UK

30 September 2016 in Community neighbourhoods
​Newham residents are among the happiest and least anxious people in the UK according to new figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this week.
​The annual ONS population survey measures people’s levels of life satisfaction, happiness, anxiety and feeling worthwhile. People are asked to rate their answers on a scale from zero  for not at all to 10 for completely.

The latest figures, covering April 2015 to March 2016, show Newham is the joint third place in the capirtal for people feeling happy – scoring an average of 7.92. This is compared to the averages for the 7.48 average for the UK and 7.41 for London.

The figures also showed Newham residents were among the least anxious in the UK, scoring 2.57 compared to the UK and London averages of 2.87. Only Enfield and Barnet scored lower in London.

In the life satisfaction section Newham scored an average of 7.74, beating the UK and London averages of 7.65 and 7.51 respectively. The borough also scored higher then the UK and London averages for people feeling worthwhile – scoring 7.92 compared to 7.84 for the UK and 7.72 for London.

The ONS figures also show the averages for the previous four years – showing Newham has seen improvements in all of the four areas every year since 2011/2012. They show that:
  • happiness in the borough has risen from an average of 7.05 in 2011/2012
  • the anxiety of Newham residents has fallen from an average of 3.89 in 2011/2012
  • the number of people feeling worthwhile has risen from the 2011/2012 average of  7.34
  • life satisfaction in Newham has risen from an average of 7.12 in 2011/2012. 
The results mirror the findings of the council’s Liveability Survey and Household Panel Survey, both carried out last year. These found 89 per cent of residents said the borough is a place where people from different backgrounds get on well together.

Newham Council is committed to developing a strong and cohesive community by helping residents integrate and play an active role in their local area.

This includes promoting the importance of speaking English; ensuring fairness to all residents across all of the council services; only funding initiatives and groups which are open to all members of the community; and the staging of a wide range of free local and borough wide events bringing residents together.

Mayor of Newham, Sir Robin Wales, said: “We strive to create a positive community spirit across the borough and ensure that our residents have every opportunity to fulfil their potential. These ONS figures are further evidence that our approach is working.

“It’s about creating a culture of inclusivity and treating everyone fairly, helping raise the aspirations of our schoolchildren, and creating the jobs and providing the high quality homes our residents need and deserve.

“We all know that Newham is a great and fun place to live and we will continue to work to make it even better.”

The ONS’ Personal well-being in the UK: local authority update, 2015 to 2016 was published 27 September.

You can also download the Estimates of life satisfaction, worthwhile, happiness and anxiety for the financial years ending 2012 to 2016.