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Although retirement is the start of an exciting new chapter, it can feel overwhelming to decide what to do next. While some embark on this next stage embracing their current life, others crave a new start in a different place. In fact, experts at HeatingForce.co.uk found that 64% of Brits plan to move to a different UK city when they retire. With endless possibilities, how do you decide where to take this next step?

HeatingForce.co.uk looked to answer this question by creating an index-based point system of UK cities best for retirement, looking at various social and geographical factors. This system considered crime level, annual sunshine, quality of health care and access to various leisure activities among other factors. 

With all of this in mind, it was determined that Norwich (pictured) is the best UK city to retire due to its high number of parks and health walks. The beautiful scenery is perfect for those wanting to embrace the outdoors and stay active. Safety is also one of the city’s most attractive qualities, as it boasts the lowest crime level in the UK. 

For those that fancy more of a social life, York could be the place for you. Ranking second, the city is filled with cosy cafés and beautiful natural outdoor space, perfect for morning meetups and picnics at the park. 

In third place is Bournemouth, which could be the best way to walk off into the sunset – literally. This city ranks highest for hours of annual sunshine with a dazzling 1,767 hours, which combined with its notorious sandy beaches makes for a dreamy place to retire. 

Following closely behind these cities is Edinburgh, Newcastle upon Tyne and Plymouth, respectively ranking fourth, fifth and sixth. While it’s evident where the best places to start this next chapter are, how do you know where to avoid? HeatingForce.co.uk has you covered.

With one of the highest crime levels and lowest health care rankings in the UK, Coventry is deemed to be the worst city to relocate to in retirement. The city scored a mere 13 out of 1,000 on the index-based point system, which when compared to Norwich’s score of 925, is a no-brainer. 

Following Coventry in the worst city to retire in the UK is Armagh, and it’s clear why. The city has one of the lowest number of hours of annual sunshine in the UK, and ranks among the lowest across all analysed leisure activities. As both are pivotal factors to maintaining your mental health, it’s not the best place for a fresh start. Birmingham ranks as the third worst city to retire to in the UK, primarily due to holding the second-highest crime rate.

When asked for their reason for choosing to relocate when they retire, 54% of those interviewed said so that they can have new experiences. While it can be unnerving taking this next step, you can now do it confidently and informed, with excitement on the horizon. 


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