SADDLEWORTH has been named one of the best places to live in the North West of England
The parish’s collection of cosmopolitan villages has seen the area bracketed with Cheshire jewels, Knutsford and Bollington, plus Manchester and Liverpool in the annual Sunday Times Best Places to Live guide.
Altrincham was declared overall winner while Arnside and Silverdale and Kirby Lonsdale were also listed for mention alongside Saddleworth.
It was almost double celebration for those locals wishing to cut local administration links with Oldham and Greater Manchester.
The initial notification located Saddleworth in West Yorkshire before the paper issued a clarification.
The judging panel’s citation for Saddleworth reads: “This collection of villages combines old-fashioned country living with high-class shops and restaurants -perfect for Manchester commuters and work-from-homers looking for fresher air without sacrificing the good things of life.”
Their highlights include luxury ice cream from Grandpa Greene’s in Diggle and country pubs such as the Cross Keys Inn and the Church Inn.
The average sale price of houses is given as £229,000 with an average rental of £1,200 pcm.
Judges behind the guide assess a wide range of factors, from schools, air quality, transport and broadband speeds to culture, green spaces and the health of the high street.
They look for improving towns, villages or city centres, for attractive, well designed homes and locations bursting with community spirit – which the pandemic has shown to be the most vital quality of all.
Helen Davies, The Times and Sunday Times Property Editor said: “This guide has never been so important.
“The pandemic has taught us just how much we rely on our homes, our communities and our surroundings. With working from home now common, it’s no surprise that many of us are reassessing our priorities and thinking hard about where we really want to live.
“Our focus for this year has been community, countryside and convenience.
“It hasn’t been a year for big cities or small villages. Instead, it is small towns that have shone: big enough to have everything you need within walking distance and small enough for everyone to feel connected.
For more details on all locations visit https://www.thetimes.co.uk/best-places-to-live