- New research reveals the top 10 most and least anxious places in the UK, at the start of the pandemic
- Tamworth is third in anxiety ratings, after 21% increase compared to previous year
- Quarter of areas surveyed DROPPED in anxiety in the build-up to lockdown, while 73% rose
New research has revealed the UK’s most and least anxious towns, and the areas which rose and fell the most in anxiety before lockdown.
The study, by IVA Advice, analysed ONS anxiety data on a scale of 1-10 in 412 areas from April 2019 to March 2020, to find the UK’s top 10 highest and lowest anxiety towns.
Tamworth 3.93 anxiety rating puts it in the top 1% of anxious areas in the UK. The town also saw anxiety spike by 21.1% in the build up to the pandemic, having recorded a rating of 3.1 in the previous year’s measurements.
Other parts of Staffordshire that were included in the ONS ratings are considerably more relaxed. Staffordshire returned a 2.93 rating, lower than the national average, while the figure for Staffordshire Moorlands was 2.86.
East Staffordshire’s anxiety rating was 2.5, while South Staffordshire is the least anxious area in the county, with just 2.36 out of 10.
Overall 73% of all the UK’s surveyed areas rose in anxiety in the, while 25% percent of UK areas surveyed dropped in anxiety, despite the stress-induced build up to lockdown in March 2020.
The average anxiety rating for the whole of the UK comes to 3.02, a 7% increase on the figure for 2018/19, which was 2.81. This is the first time that the average anxiety ratinghas risen above 3 since 2011/12.
The UK’s most anxious list is topped by Castle Point, South Essex. The town has a 3.95 out of 10 anxiety rating, which pushes it well above the rest of the country. With an anxiety surge of 35.7% since 2018-19, Castle Point is also the third highest area for increased anxiety.
By contrast, Burnley, Lancashire, is the UK’s least anxious place, with an anxiety rating of just 1.99 out of 10. Burnley also saw a massive 50.8% drop in anxiety between 2018-19 to 2019-20, despite the start of the Coronavirus pandemic in Britain.
The UK’s second least anxious area is Fylde in Lancashire, with anxiety levels at a mere 2 out of 10.
Melton shows the biggest disparity in anxiety levels between 2018-19 and 2019-20, with a jaw-dropping 70% fall in anxiety. After Burnley, Exeter shows the third-biggest decrease in anxiety, with anxiety levels falling by 22.5% right before lockdown.
At the other end of the scale, Great Yarmouth showed the biggest increase in anxiety between 2018-19 and 2019-20, with an anxiety spike of 39.8%.
This is closely followed by Woking, whose anxiety disparity of 1.43 is accompanied by a 39.6% jump in anxiety levels.
A spokesperson at IVA Advice said: “It’s very interesting to see the varying anxiety levels across different parts of the UK, especially as these figures reflect the very start of pandemic in March 2020. There’s a clear trend that shows, despite the understandable rise in anxiety in many places across the UK, anxiety fell significantly in several areas just before lockdown”.
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