Healthy living

Somerset village tops life expectancy table

Somerset village tops life expectancy table Most of the top 15 places located in southern England

A Somerset village named after England's patron saint has topped a new league table for life expectancy in the UK, according to research by an actuarial firm.

Male retirees aged 65 living in Hinton St George can expect to live to the ripe old age of 88.7, while women can expect to reach to 91.6 years, the research by Towers Watson found.

According to the Office for National Statistics, on average men and women born in the UK today can expect to live to the age of 78.2 and 82.3 respectively.

The study looked at mortality rates among 1.5 million retired men and women in 51 final salary pension schemes.

For life expectancy, Hinton St George was closely followed by Aldeburgh in Suffolk, Frinton-on-Sea in Essex, Seaview on the Isle of Wight and Ferndown in Dorset.

The towns with the highest life expectancy are nearly all located in the South of England. Talybont in Merionethshire, Gwynedd, is the only one in the top 15 which is not in southern England.

Bootle in Merseyside was the worst place for life expectancy. According to the analysis, male and female retirees can expect to live to 84.9 and 89.0 respectively.

This was followed by Castlederg in County Tyrone, where men are expected to live to an average age of 85, and women to an average age of 89.1.

The places with the lowest life expectancy are all in either Northern Ireland or Scotland, the research shows.

In English towns, pensioners in Salford, Greater Manchester, have the shortest life expectancy after those in Bootle.

Matthew Fletcher, a senior consultant at Towers Watson, said: "Where people live can be a powerful predictor of how long they will live. Of course, this does not mean that a man could extend his life by four years simply by moving from Merseyside to Somerset.

"Instead, a pensioner’s address provides clues to other things linked to life expectancy, like their lifestyle and how much money they have from sources besides their pension."

The company also said it's analysis showed how life expectancy can differ by two to three years when comparing areas within towns or even neighbouring streets.

This article was published on Tue 24 April 2012

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