Newport, Caerphilly and Blaenau Gwent named as unhappiest places in Wales
12:46pm Thursday 24th October 2013 in News
PEOPLE from Newport are among the unhappiest in Wales, new figures show.
The Office for National Statistics revealed that on average Newport people gave the lowest answer when asked to rank their happiness out of 10, when 0 was ranked as “not at all” happy and 10 was “completely”.
Statistics were taken from the annual population survey, conducted from April 2012 to March 2013.
People were asked to rank how satisfied they were with their life, to what extent things they felt their lives were worthwhile and how happy and anxious they felt the day before they took the survey.
Some 14.9 per cent of those questioned said they would rate their level of happiness at between 0-4.
About 165,000 people across the UK were asked for their answers.
On average, Newport people were the least satisfied with their life of people across Wales.
Blade Olson, 17, from Hoskin Street in Shaftesbury, Newport said he could understand why the city was placed where it was in the survey and that he wanted to leave it as quickly as possible.
“It’s not the people – people usually say it’s the people. But it’s just the place and the unemployment,” he said.
Will Pannell, 22, manager of The Lamb, Newport, said: “I am not unhappy to live in Newport. I have been manager of the Lamb since July this year and so I am happy to be employed and have a good job.”
Kiera Davidson, 20, of Newport is a psychology student at Cardiff Metropolitan University, She said: “I am generally happy but the only reason I am unhappy is because Newport is not as good as it used to be.
“But they are working to improve it. I was unhappy with losing the Chartist Mural. It's an example of how the council can communicate better.”
David Bassett, 76, of the Handpost area of Newport, said: “I am unhappy living here, but it will be better when the development work is done.”
A total of 14.7 per cent of people asked in Caerphilly borough ranked their happiness below four out of 10, the second least satisfied in Wales. Blaenau Gwent was the third least happy (13.4 per cent) and Torfaen was the fifth (13 per cent). But people from Monmouthshire are the fifth most likely to say their lives are worthwhile - rating of 7.8 out of ten for happiness.
It is also one of Wales’ happiest places – 34.5 per cent of people said they would rank their happiness as scoring either nine or 10 out of 10.
In a related poll, people from Blaenau Gwent were those most likely in Wales to think that their lives were not worthwhile with 6.9 per cent of people saying they would rate their worthwhile score as between 0-4.
But in other areas the scores were still high. In Torfaen 5.56 per cent of people said their worthwhile score was between 0-4. In Newport the average was 5.08 per cent, in Monmouthshire it was 4.12 per cent and 4.08 Caerphilly 4.08 per cent.
The ONS noted that the high level of unemployment in Blaenau Gwent was likely to have contributed to this low ‘worthwhile’ score.
Suzanne Wood, consultant in public health for Public Health Wales, said: “There are simple steps we can all take to improve our mental well-being. We can try spending more time with our family and friends. Staying active can also help to clear your mind and lower stress.”