Huntingdonshire village takes top spot in friendliest places poll

Houghton Mill

Houghton Mill - Credit: Archant

Houghton has been named as Britain’s friendliest place to live in a survey by property firm Fine and Country.

The village, between Huntingdon and St Ives, beat places like York, Henley-on-Thames and Norwich to the top spot.

The news was no surprise to Councillor Lesley Craig, chairman of Houghton and Wyton Parish Council.

She said: “It is friendly. We still have a community - we are not a dormitory village yet.”

Cllr Craig said there was friendly rivalry between the Houghton and Wyton ends of the village but they were really a single community.

She said many of the villagers had stayed on after service in the RAF and now more people were moving in from London.

“We have seen people move in and when relatives come to visit them they have come to live here too,” she said.

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Cllr Craig said growth was limited by the village being sandwiched between the main road and the river which meant it had retained its traditional feel.

She said they had some nice walks along the river, the historic mill, pubs and shops, with the once quiet National Trust car park now often busy.

“It is a very nice place,” Cllr Craig said.

Fine and Country said Houghton, which knocked Monmouth on the Welsh borders into second place, was set around a charming square with a community shop, pubs, a tea room and the National Trust mill.

Richard Carpenter, from Fine and Country’s St Neots branch, said: “Locals are always happy to suggest walks, give directions or recommend the best place for lunch.

“The primary school is a community hub where local parents chat about the endless social activities in the village, including ‘supper safaris’ where locals go from house to house, enjoying one course at each stop.”

Mr Carpenter said: “Houghton must be one of the friendliest places. Families that want to move always ask us to find them a new home in the village to keep them close to friends.

“Those moving in to the area quickly become part of the village life and, like the locals, never want to move out of the village.”