Swansea has been named the most beautiful city in the UK in a study conducted by webblinds.com a blinds and curtains company. Swansea beat out strong competition including Bristol, Brighton, Plymouth and Derby. The study evaluated 175 different statistics on the 25 biggest cities in the UK. It took into account proximity to the sea, average rainfall and sunshine, the number of parks and the number of nearby National Trust sites. Dylan Thomas the Swansea born poet famously described the area as “an ugly lovely town”. Though later accounts have used more colourful language, including the description of Swansea being a “pretty s****y city” in the locally filmed ‘Twin Town’.
BBC Radio Wales’ breakfast host Mal Pope wondered why it had taken people “so long to realise. I drive to work every morning at 5am along Swansea Bay and, as I drive, I see the sun breaking and it just looks beautiful it’s not always had the greatest reputation because of the high street, but when you walk down the street people are so friendly and funny. Naturally so, I don’t mean they are telling jokes.” He cited the surfing beach Langland Bay as being one of the incredible benefits of Swansea. “We have got the best bays in the world,” Mal said. “It’s a remarkable place to live; it has great schools and universities. There is this whole thing about Swansea being the graveyard of ambition. People say that’s negative, but it’s a positive. People come here from all around the world and they do not want to leave. People are ambitious but they are not ambitious to go.”
The local MP Geraint Davies gave his opinion on Swansea arguing that it was now “a global brand thanks to the football and is a wonderful environment with unique views. More and more Swansea is becoming a place to invest and to live and work. While others are worrying about their future, Swansea is rolling up its sleeves and opening its arms to new investors and we’ll continue going from strength to strength. We’ve got a lot going for us.” While this survey does have to be taken with an extremely large pinch of salt, its clear Swansea offers much to residence and students, with one of the closest universities to a beach in the UK and the picturesque views from Gower and the Mumbles. So while Swansea might not really be the most beautiful city in the UK, it is clear it is still a fantastic place to live and study.