Is Twickenham truly the fifth unhappiest place to live?

No, it's not: So says Doug Orchard, among others

No, it's not: So says Doug Orchard, among others

First published in News by , Reporter

The good people of Twickenham have poured scorn on a survey that named the town Britain’s fifth unhappiest to live in.

Rightmove’s Happy at Home Index found Twickenham people to be among the most miserable in the country.

Nearly 50,000 people took part in the survey, asked to rate their where they live on several factors, such as wellbeing, pride, safety and neighbourliness.

Only east London, Ilford, Croydon and east central London ranked as less happy than Twickenham, although the entire top 10 was made up of London areas.

Among those in total disagreement with the survey was wind-up radio inventor Trevor Baylis, who lives on Eel Pie Island.

Mr Baylis, 77, said: “The findings from the survey are absolute crap.

“You could ask to live in a better place, Twickenham has everything you could possibly need or imagine.

“You walk down the street and everybody says good morning to you – I could not disagree more and Rightmove have made an enemy in Trevor Baylis.”

Doug Orchard, chairman of the Twickenham Society, was bewildered by the findings and said he had no complaints about the town.

He said: “We had our AGM last week and as far as I can tell, everyone is very happy living in Twickenham.

“I have lived in the town since 1972 and if I thought it wasn’t a happy place to be, I would have moved.

“It’s good for those who work in the City, it’s near the river and we have so many open spaces to enjoy, such as Marble Hill Park.

“I don’t know where they got that idea [that Twickenham is unhappy] - my daughter works as an estate agent and has never heard anything negative.”

The survey found Harrogate to be the happiest place to live, followed by Inverness and Taunton.

Rightmove’s Matthew James said: “What we’ve done is ask people to rate their own area on the 12 most important of these factors and created a model that crunches this data to give us an overall happiness league table.

“And there should be no arguments with the results as there can be no better panel of judges than a town’s own residents.”

Twickenham people also expressed their surprise on Twitter.

Andrew Wilson tweeted: “What’s this I hear of #Twickenham being full of unhappy people - rubbish, fab people, fab place”.

Peter Kirkham tweeted: “It’s amazing how much difference being JUST off the tube system makes”.

However @titchell posted: “The Twickenham area is the 5th most miserable place to live in the UK apparently. The last year makes sense now.”

Earlier this year, Teddington was named in a book called Crap Towns Returns, which described the town as “completely soulless”.

  • Were you asked to take part in the survey? Do you think Twickenham is a happy place to live? Comment below to let us know.

Comments (5)

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12:53pm Mon 26 May 14

LaurenceMann says...

Twickenham. Full of miserable people? That is puzzling. I've lived here for half my life, and love it here. Given the extremely high demand for homes here, which presumably Rightmove might know a little about, it seems that the market does not agree.

In fact, the main downside here is the fact that every third shop seems to be an estate agency!
Twickenham. Full of miserable people? That is puzzling. I've lived here for half my life, and love it here. Given the extremely high demand for homes here, which presumably Rightmove might know a little about, it seems that the market does not agree. In fact, the main downside here is the fact that every third shop seems to be an estate agency! LaurenceMann
  • Score: 9

10:58am Wed 28 May 14

helen59 says...

I was born in Twickenham and love the town although it could do with a few improvements. We have the great Steve Allen, Trevor Bayliss and other people that are VERY, VERY HAPPY to live in such a great town.

my advice...........nev
er, ever listen to estate agents
I was born in Twickenham and love the town although it could do with a few improvements. We have the great Steve Allen, Trevor Bayliss and other people that are VERY, VERY HAPPY to live in such a great town. my advice...........nev er, ever listen to estate agents helen59
  • Score: 13

12:39pm Thu 29 May 14

kingstonpaul says...

Happiness is far too complex a state of mind to be measured by crude surveys such as this. File under 'junk'. Or as Mr Bayliss would prefer it, 'crap'.
Never forget that garbage like this is designed to generate PR. And there's a devil's pact between the people who produce this stuff and the lazy journalists who've lost the ability to sniff out something genuinely newsworthy, and use it to fill their column inches.
Happiness is far too complex a state of mind to be measured by crude surveys such as this. File under 'junk'. Or as Mr Bayliss would prefer it, 'crap'. Never forget that garbage like this is designed to generate PR. And there's a devil's pact between the people who produce this stuff and the lazy journalists who've lost the ability to sniff out something genuinely newsworthy, and use it to fill their column inches. kingstonpaul
  • Score: 0

11:55am Tue 3 Jun 14

LizzyJ says...

It was a happiness "at home" survey, not a general happiness survey, so the RTT has misreported it. Also, it seems to have been carried out via Right Move branches, rather than randomly, so it is probably more representative of local Right Move customers than it is of the general population. (They made me feel pretty miserable when they handled my house move too).

For reference, here are the scores (ranked out of 117 branches) for each factor "measured" :

Decor 110 (yep, I'd agree Tw folk are generally pretty houseproud, but Victorian houses don't always lend themselves to that)

Space 110 (no surprise there given the cost of family size houses locally)

Contentment 101 (Well if you're househunring, by definition you're probably not content, especially when you see the prices)

Value 94 (Again, no surprise. Small houses for big money equals poor value)

Investment 83 (People who bought their houses a few years ago might disagree)

Wellbeing 110 (Hard to see how that is different to contentment. There's no explanation or definition).

Pride 111 (Perhaps the people being surveyed wanted to buy in Richmond/Teddington/
St Margarets but couldn't afford it. They'll grow to appreciate it, but 'pride' is a strong word to use if you're not into rugby.

Cost 83 (It's blooming expensive)

Safety 69 (Not bad, and better than most of the other London branches)

Amenities 60 (Again, not bad.)

Recreation 38 (Our best score, and something to celebrate)

Neighbourliness 85 (Many homes are dormitories for London commuters, so that doesn't surprise me).
It was a happiness "at home" survey, not a general happiness survey, so the RTT has misreported it. Also, it seems to have been carried out via Right Move branches, rather than randomly, so it is probably more representative of local Right Move customers than it is of the general population. (They made me feel pretty miserable when they handled my house move too). For reference, here are the scores (ranked out of 117 branches) for each factor "measured" : Decor 110 (yep, I'd agree Tw folk are generally pretty houseproud, but Victorian houses don't always lend themselves to that) Space 110 (no surprise there given the cost of family size houses locally) Contentment 101 (Well if you're househunring, by definition you're probably not content, especially when you see the prices) Value 94 (Again, no surprise. Small houses for big money equals poor value) Investment 83 (People who bought their houses a few years ago might disagree) Wellbeing 110 (Hard to see how that is different to contentment. There's no explanation or definition). Pride 111 (Perhaps the people being surveyed wanted to buy in Richmond/Teddington/ St Margarets but couldn't afford it. They'll grow to appreciate it, but 'pride' is a strong word to use if you're not into rugby. Cost 83 (It's blooming expensive) Safety 69 (Not bad, and better than most of the other London branches) Amenities 60 (Again, not bad.) Recreation 38 (Our best score, and something to celebrate) Neighbourliness 85 (Many homes are dormitories for London commuters, so that doesn't surprise me). LizzyJ
  • Score: -1

7:16pm Tue 3 Jun 14

mumto1plus2 says...

“And there should be no arguments with the results as there can be no better panel of judges than a town’s own residents.” ??? Aha ha ha haaa! Yes, because everybody knows that surveys conducted amongst a small group of people represent the view of the majority 100%. LOL. Estate agents never surprise...
“And there should be no arguments with the results as there can be no better panel of judges than a town’s own residents.” ??? Aha ha ha haaa! Yes, because everybody knows that surveys conducted amongst a small group of people represent the view of the majority 100%. LOL. Estate agents never surprise... mumto1plus2
  • Score: 0

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