It’s official: Banchory best place to live

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Five places in Scotland have been named in the top 50 Best Places to Live in the Countryside by The Sunday Times and Banchory is number one.

The accolade came in part one of The Sunday Times Best Places to Live guide, which was published on Sunday March 1. The annual supplements combine data and statistics such as crime rates, house prices and school performance with the local knowledge and expertise of Sunday Times writers to compile the definitive top 50 countryside locations to make your home.

Special mention was reserved for Portree on the Isly of Skye, as The Sunday Times named it the best for starry skies.

The Sunday Times Best Places to Live in the Countryside is the first in a four part series in partnership with Zoopla.

Part two of the guide is published with The Sunday Times on Sunday March 8, and will focus on Britain’s cities, part three is published on Sunday March 15 and looks at the best towns in the country, while part four, on Sunday March 22 will reveal The Best Places to Live Overseas.

The locations were selected for combining desirable features such as a positive community spirit, good local shops and services, as well as access to some of Britain’s most attractive outdoor spaces

Commenting on The Sunday Times Best Places to Live in the Countryside, Home Editor Helen Davies said: “Britain is home to some of the most idyllic – and wild – countryside, and this supplement is dedicated to celebrating the very best of rural life. We worked carefully to compile a list which combines statistical analysis with personal experience and Sunday Times expertise to create our top 50.”

Readers will be able to discover their own best place to live with a digital quiz on

A spokesperson for The Sunday Times said: “The Best Places to Live in Britain exemplifies The Sunday Times’ rich heritage and commitment to investing in its journalism to continue offering readers world-class, unique and unrivalled content.”

Sunday Times judges deemed Skipton in North Yorkshire as the best place to live due to its proximity to the majestic Yorkshire Dales, its great schooling and independent shops along a ‘buzzing’ high street.