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Watford is the happiest place in Hertfordshire

Watford has scored the highest happiness rating in Hertfordshire, according to the annual Office for National Statistics (ONS) survey, which asked people aged 16 and over across the UK to rate four areas of their personal wellbeing for 2017/18.

The average happiness score for respondents in Watford was 8, above the national average of 7.52 and the highest in Hertfordshire. According to ONS research, people's views about their health, employment and relationship status are the factors most likely to impact how they rate their personal wellbeing.

People are asked to give their answers on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is “not at all” and 10 is “completely”. These questions allow people to make an assessment of their life overall, as well as providing an indication of their day-to-day emotions.

Elected Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor, said “I’m not surprised Watford is the happiest place in Hertfordshire. We have a vibrant community and it really is a wonderful place to live. We’ve worked hard to make Watford the dynamic place it is today, investing a lot in the area, including our parks, the town centre and local theatres, to ensure it continues to be a place people love to live in.”

Watford has recently seen a lot of improvements and investment over the last few years, including the regeneration of Cassiobury Park and the opening of the Cassiobury Hub - which has been visited by over 2million people - the £180million intu extension and major High Street improvements, all designed to give residents improved facilities to enjoy. The council also continues to invest in its Big Events programme, which is a series of outdoor events enjoyed by thousands of people, held in the town centre or Cassiobury Park, and includes exciting events such as the Big Skate, Big Sports, Big Screen and Cassiobury Fireworks display.

Silvia Manclossi, head of the quality of life team at the ONS, said: "We have identified how factors such as health, access to services and crime levels may affect how people rate their wellbeing in different parts of the UK. This can help local authorities and other organisations to better understand where services could be targeted to help improve the wellbeing of people in their area.”