The UK has plenty of variety when it comes to its towns and cities. Some are more modern and distinguishable by their high rise buildings, while others are famous for their historic architecture and ancient traditions.

Seaside towns are another specific type of residential location in the UK. While they may have been settlements for centuries, many became popular holiday destinations in Victorian times with the arrival of the railway.

Nowadays, this popularity may have waned but many of these towns are still beloved by locals and tourists alike. And some are even named among the best places to live.

This is the case with Leigh-on-Sea, a “charming” seaside town in Essex located next to the popular Victorian holiday spot of Southend-on-Sea.

As part of Rightmove’s 2023 Happy at Home Index survey it was voted the 11th happiest place in the country to live.

But this has more to do with just being by the sea.

Visit Essex describes Leigh-on-Sea as a town full of “unique character and charm”.

“It is well worth a visit with plenty of attractions and eateries to keep you entertained,” it says.

“With galleries and craft shops, a selection of pubs, excellent fish restaurants and the famous cockle sheds, this picturesque town is the perfect place for you to unwind and take in the fresh sea air.

“If you feel happiest by the sea, why not consider moving to Leigh-on-Sea?” it said.

“This charming seaside town in Essex has become an increasingly popular place to live, with a steady stream of Londoners relocating over the years.

“Home to bustling bars, characterful coffee shops, and brunch spots set in beachside surroundings, it’s easy to see why this seaside town is one of the happiest places to live – and one of the coolest too.

“The town is ranked among the 10 safest small towns in Essex and its crime rate sits 35% lower than the national average.”

It is also close to London, making it an ideal home for commuters.

Train services to London run regularly throughout the day and take between 50 and 70 minutes.

According to Rightmove, properties in Leigh-On-Sea had an overall average price of £445,638 over the last year.

The majority of sales in Leigh-On-Sea during the last year were semi-detached properties, selling for an average price of £469,398.

Flats sold for an average of £260,832, with detached properties fetching £663,837.

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