Berkhamsted ranked 15th best place for commuters to live

Berkhamsted is a 'safe and desirable' place for commuters to live
Berkhamsted is a 'safe and desirable' place for commuters to live

Berkhamsted has been named one of the top 15 towns in the country for commuters in a detailed new study.

The town came 14th after a look at 15 key indicators for towns within an hour of London.

Nearby Harpenden came top of the pile, with Berkhamsted joining other towns such as Billericay, St Albans and Sevenoaks in the top 15.

Locations were picked from London Underground Zone 5 outwards, with a population of more than 15,000, and with an hour or less journey time to London.

The study was conducted over a number of weeks by JLL Residential Research, and looked at criteria such as average household income, crime rate, travel costs, housing affordability and nightlife.

Nick Whitten, associate director for UK research at JLL, told the Gazette: “We looked at 200 towns in this study, so for Berkhamsted to finish 14th is a very decent position.

“This was an attempt to try and put down some of the important data points that people would consider when they’re looking at commuting options.

“We used something called the ACORN system, which takes data and puts people into a box and gives them a demographic.

“The highest ranking demographic are ‘affluent achievers’, and the second highest is ‘rising prosperity.’ 66 per cent of the town fell within those two categories.”

The study found that Berkhamsted ranked 16th out of the top 30 for travel costs, the time it took to commute, and the options available for travel.

The research also showed that the average household income was £56,000 - far beyond the £40,000 national average.

The town also ranked well with its crime rate, having the sixth lowest.

It fared less well in the top 30 when it came to its nightlife ranking, finishing joint last.

But another key factor for commuters - where to send their children to school - saw Berkhamsted ranked highly.

Within one mile of the rail station, there are at least two schools ranked as ‘Outstanding’ with Ofsted - with Nick Whitten saying there was a “decent chance of getting a good school for children”.

Mr Whitten added: “If you’re looking at these results, then Berkhamsted is scoring as a particularly pleasant, safe and connectable community.

“When you look at all the combinations, it’s a nice, safe, desirable place to live.”