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Revealed: The 25 Most Creative Towns & Cities In The UK

Whether you’re an artist, musician or designer, or if you just like surrounding yourself with creative types, where in the UK would suit you most?

We were wondering just that, and have taken a look at 50 of the country’s most populated towns and cities, ranking them based on their creativity.

We looked at the amount of creative jobs being advertised, how universities rank for creative subjects such as art and music, and the amount of music venues and art galleries.

Check out the results for yourself below.

Town/City Creative Jobs Points Creative UniversityPoints Theatre & Concert Venue Points Art Galleries Points Total Points
1. Edinburgh 37 48 47 50 182
2. Brighton and Hove 40 38 48 48 174
3. Oxford 46 45 38 43 172
4. Norwich 39 33 49 49 170
5. Manchester 49 47 36 37 169
6. Glasgow 28 50 42 41 161
7. Bristol 45 34 44 34 157
8. York 38 44 24 41 147
9. London 48 41 30 27 146
10. Newcastle upon Tyne 41 21 38 43 143
11. Nottingham 43 49 25 25 142
12. Cambridge 50 42 46 1 139
13. Belfast 24 30 35 47 136
14. Liverpool 22 36 42 31 131
15. Plymouth 10 35 39 46 130
16. Ipswich 25 15 43 45 128
17. Aberdeen 9 40 45 33 127
18. Leicester 36 43 24 22 125
19. Birmingham 34 46 21 23 124
20. Reading 44 22 32 26 124
21. Swansea 8 37 42 36 123
22. Southampton 30 25 32 33 120
23. Leeds 42 39 16 22 119
24. Bournemouth 33 28 34 24 119
25. Cardiff 20 27 26 45 118

If you’re interested in digging deeper into the data; here are the four individual tables and the associated rankings for each:

Creative Jobs

If you work in the creative sector, it’s important that there are local jobs which support your talent. As such, we’ve taken a look at the number of creative positions currently available in each of the towns and cities.

Town/City Creative Jobs Per/10,000 People Points
1. Cambridge 456 34.84 50
2. Manchester 1576 29.72 49
3. London 20,459 23.59 48
4. Oxford 297 17.65 46
5. Bristol 754 16.78 45
6. Reading 369 15.86 44
7. Nottingham 499 15.52 43
8. Leeds 1,088 14.06 42
9. Newcastle upon Tyne 389 13.28 41
10. Brighton and Hove 359 13.13 40
11. Norwich 173 12.24 39
12. York 239 11.55 38
13. Edinburgh 526 11.31 37
14. Leicester 386 11.27 36
15. Birmingham 1,200 10.80 34
16. Bournemouth 194 10.57 33
17. Southampton 225 8.87 30
18. Glasgow 506 8.39 28
19. Ipswich 109 8.17 25
20. Belfast 268 8.05 24
21. Liverpool 350 7.31 22
22. Cardiff 250 7.22 20
23. Plymouth 110 4.19 10
24. Aberdeen 76 3.86 9
25. Swansea 66 3.68 8

Creative University Score

Millennials are the future of the creative sector and there’s a clear correlation between towns and cities where the local university offers great creative courses and the overall creative flair of the area. As such, we’ve taken the ‘Creative University Score’ for each location:

Town/City Creative University Score Points
1. Glasgow 365.35 50
2. Nottingham 361.2 49
3. Edinburgh 358.68 48
4. Manchester 358 47
5. Birmingham 356.95 46
6. Oxford 356.85 45
7. York 353 44
8. Leicester 349.4 43
9. Cambridge 349.15 42
10. London 345.33 41
11. Aberdeen 341.9 40
12. Leeds 341.46 39
13. Brighton and Hove 328.55 38
14. Swansea 326.3 37
15. Liverpool 325.31 36
16. Plymouth 313.8 35
17. Bristol 268.75 34
18. Norwich 268.1 33
19. Belfast 260.75 30
20. Bournemouth 256.15 28
21. Cardiff 254.95 27
22. Southampton 244.9 25
23. Reading 186.4 22
24. Newcastle upon Tyne 184.75 21
25. Ipswich 162.6 15

Theatre & Concert Venues

Drama and music are great ways for creatives to express themselves, so we thought it important to establish which towns and cities offer the most theatres and concert venues per 10,000 inhabitants:

Town/City Theatre/Concert Venues Per/10,000 People Points
1. Norwich 12 0.85 49
2. Brighton and Hove 19 0.69 48
3. Edinburgh 29 0.62 47
4. Cambridge 8 0.61 46
5. Aberdeen 11 0.56 45
6. Bristol 24 0.53 44
7. Ipswich 7 0.52 43
8. Glasgow 30 0.50 42
9. Liverpool 24 0.50 42
10. Swansea 9 0.50 42
11. Plymouth 13 0.49 39
12. Oxford 8 0.48 38
13. Newcastle upon Tyne 14 0.48 38
14. Manchester 25 0.47 36
15. Belfast 15 0.45 35
16. Bournemouth 8 0.44 34
17. Reading 10 0.43 32
18. Southampton 11 0.43 32
19. London 349 0.40 30
20. Cardiff 13 0.38 26
21. Nottingham 11 0.34 25
22. York 6 0.29 24
23. Leicester 10 0.29 24
24. Birmingham 29 0.26 21
25. Leeds 15 0.19 16

Art Galleries

Last, but by no means least, we’ve taken a look at the number of art galleries per 10,000 inhabitants across each town and city, showcasing not only the artistic talent within the area, but also the demand for this side of the ‘creative space’ from locals:

Town/City Art Galleries Per/10,000 People Rank
1. Edinburgh 48 1.03 50
2. Norwich 13 0.92 49
3. Brighton and Hove 22 0.80 48
4. Belfast 21 0.63 47
5. Plymouth 14 0.53 46
6. Ipswich 7 0.52 45
7. Cardiff 18 0.52 45
8. Oxford 8 0.48 43
9. Newcastle upon Tyne 14 0.48 43
10. Glasgow 28 0.46 41
11. York 9 0.43 41
12. Manchester 16 0.30 37
13. Swansea 5 0.28 36
14. Bristol 12 0.27 34
15. Aberdeen 4 0.20 33
16. Southampton 5 0.20 33
17. Liverpool 9 0.19 31
18. London 131 0.15 27
19. Reading 3 0.13 26
20. Nottingham 4 0.12 25
21. Bournemouth 2 0.11 24
22. Birmingham 11 0.10 23
23. Leicester 3 0.09 22
24. Leeds 7 0.09 22
25. Cambridge 0 0.00 1

The 10 Least Creative Towns & Cities In The UK

We know you’re not just wondering where the most creative towns and cities are but also the least. As such, here’s a summary of the bottom 10 positions in the research:

Town/City Creative Jobs Rank Creative University Rank Theatre & Concert Venue Rank Art Galleries Rank Total Rank
Southend-on-Sea 2 0 18 30 50
Sunderland 5 26 7 11 49
Poole 18 0 11 13 42
Wolverhampton 14 0 9 17 40
Swindon 23 0 16 1 40
Slough 35 0 1 1 37
Luton 16 13 4 1 34
Bradford 3 0 7 22 32
Warrington 19 0 5 1 25
Telford 12 0 2 1 15

Sources

Jobs

The amount of jobs being advertised in the local area on Indeed, with the term ‘creative’ in the description, per 10,000 people.

Creative University Score

The average scores for Art & Design, Drama, Dance & Cinematics, History of Art, Architecture & Design and Music courses, from The Complete University Guide, added together to give a total score.

Theatre/Concert Venues and Art Galleries

Taken from TripAdvisor.

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