Rural Retreats

Rural Retreats


A new national survey has revealed the most popular reasons why British people are choosing to move to rural locations.

With communities across the country recently marking World Car Free Day, “peace and quiet (e.g. less noise on roads)” tellingly emerged as the most common reason for choosing villages over life in urban locations, chosen by 66% of rural inhabitants and 54% of non-rural inhabitants.

The YouGov survey of 2,054 British adults, commissioned by national house-builder Mactaggart & Mickel in August, also revealed:

  • Two thirds of rural inhabitants would be equally encouraged to move to a village, or stay there, by the close proximity to nature (66%) and extra peace and quiet on offer (also 66%)
  • Scotland was the only region of mainland Britain where ‘cleaner air’ was the most popular perceived aspect of village life, with 48% of respondents choosing it as a factor in decisions.

Overall, the heritage & history (21%) and character & identity (31%) were the least popular named aspects of villages in the UK that would encourage Brits to live there, according to the survey.

Mactaggart & Mickel have been building homes in rural Scottish locations since 1925, launching their first English development, St Jude’s Meadow, in the Cotswold village of Milton-under-Wychwood earlier this year.

Joanne Casey, Managing Director for Mactaggart & Mickel’s Homes England division, said:

“With so many health & wellbeing benefits on offer from rural living, it’s perhaps unsurprising that reduced traffic noise, cleaner air and better access to nature have emerged as the most popular perceived aspects of village life in the UK.

“That’s why we believe it’s vitally important for house-builders to always build sympathetically in rural locations and carefully consider any implications for the local area within their plans.

“Whether it’s through using local materials or employing local specialist trades like roof thatching, we’re committed to delivering homes with a positive impact on their village surroundings.”

Further information on Mactaggart & Mickel’s Oxfordshire village homes can be found here.

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