Shetland scores highly in research into life satisfaction

by Alastair Hamilton -

Shetland residents reported high levels of life satisfaction in research recently published by the Office for National Statistics.

The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics underline the islands" appeal as a place to live. Shetland residents scored their islands at 8.04 on a scale that measures "life satisfaction", compared to a UK average of 7.45. The islands also did well on other criteria.

Other similar studies, such as the Bank of Scotland's series, have ranked Shetland very highly on quality of life, usually placing the islands at or near the top of the table. The factors that count in Shetland's favour usually include low unemployment, higher than average incomes, greater life expectancy, good health and very low levels of crime.

To those can be added one of the finest natural environments in Europe, a fascinating heritage, superb cultural opportunities – especially since the opening of the new arts centre, Mareel – and sports and recreational facilities that are unquestionably the envy of places with a population many times larger.

And whilst statisticians haven't found a way of measuring the friendliness of the nation's communities, the chances are that Shetland would score well on that index, too.

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