Forget ROI and day delegate rates; where should you take your conference if you want the happiest destination in the UK?
It seems the answer is Harrogate, according to a recent survey by national property website Rightmove.
Researchers asked 40,000 homeowners how they felt about their neighbourhoods and the North Yorkshire spa town came out as having the most satisfied residents.
Stockport, Ipswich and Exeter were next in line in the league of 12 measurements of ‘happiness’, which included safety and neighbourliness.
Nine of the 10 most ‘unhappy’ places were in London, with East London scoring lowest, followed by Croydon and Ilford.
Dudley in the West Midlands was the only area outside London to appear in the bottom 10 of the Rightmove site’s ‘Happy at Home’ index.
If it is ‘safety’ your delegates value most, then Hereford tops the poll (the SAS being based there surely helps).
Despite the reputation as a dour city, Aberdeen topped the ‘happy’ poll in Scotland and Swansea in Wales where the city’s football team’s success is clearly transmitting good vibes.
If you want everything indoors just-so, maybe you should be considering the new conference destination of Lincoln. The city was voted the most ‘house-proud’ by the Rightmove survey.
So, what do those happy Harrogaters think about it all?
“Conferences and events are about far more than just a meeting room, conference hall or event space. The atmosphere created by the destination has a long lasting impression on visitors,” Harrogate International Centre’s Deputy Director Simon Kent tells CN.
“Destination types differ greatly but it comes down to a distinct choice: towns v cities. But here in Harrogate we have the best of both worlds, the friendliness of a town, combined with the chic and modern event offering of cities, which creates an unique atmosphere for people visiting the town on business.
“It is the closeness and warmth among the community that is so powerful. Everybody is involved – our town becomes the events for duration of their stay. It’s this friendliness that makes Harrogate such a happy place, and why delegates and organisers return year after year.”
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