The Greater Manchester and leafy Cheshire villages named among UK's most desirable places to live

A Greater Manchester village has been named among the UK's 30 most desirable places to live in the UK. The new list also features a picturesque Cheshire village known for its celebrity residents.

Property experts from across the country have spoken to the Daily Mail about UK's most desirable villages - with both Haigh in Wigan and Alderley Edge in Cheshire making the list, reports the Mirror. With village life central to British culture, those in the know have provided their verdict on what makes the chosen 'coastal communities' and 'affluent areas' so in-demand with Brits.

As well as mentions for Greater Manchester and Cheshire, the list also features Roundhay in West Yorkshire, famed for its parkland and 'prestigious' properties, and Bishopthorpe in North Yorkshire, a historic spot known for its treelined streets and charming cottages. The costal village of Hightown in Merseyside is highlighted for its shingle beaches and one of the top 50 pubs in the UK.

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Further away, Chipping Norton, the home to former Prime Minister David Cameron makes the cut as is described as "posh as it gets". Meanwhile, Abersoch, a seaside village on the Llyn peninsula, which is known for attracting holidaymakers and day-trippers from across the North West, also features.

Haigh in Wigan
Haigh in Wigan -Credit:ASP

In its write-up, and spotlighting the small village civil parish of Haigh, the Mail states: "Despite Wigan's less glamorous reputation, Haigh's history and landscape offer a posh setting outside of city of Manchester. Home to the only remaining windmill in Greater Manchester, the village is the perfect quiet spot for a day trip."

It's not the first time Haigh has caught people's attention though. In 2024, the tiny corner of Wigan was named one of the poshest villages in Britain.

Haigh Woodland Park, Wigan
Haigh Woodland Park, Wigan -Credit:Haigh Woodland Park

Haigh made it onto the list of the ‘smartest rural locations’ in the UK, published by the Daily Telegraph. Following the 2024’s edition of the annual Sunday Times ranking of the UK’s best places to live earlier this year, which saw two Greater Manchester towns make the cut, Haigh was then named as one of the 48 'poshest' villages in the UK.

Home to Haigh Woodland Park and the country mansion Haigh Hall, the average house price in the village is £244,222. Just a few miles from Wigan town centre, it's been described as a 'hidden gem', and is known for its independent cafes and shops, historic buildings and stunning woodland park, the latter featuring a huge free adventure playground.

Haigh Hall in Wigan -Credit:Liverpool Echo
Haigh Hall in Wigan -Credit:Liverpool Echo

Haigh Windmill, the only remaining windmill in Greater Manchester, was built in 1845 and supplied well water to John Sumner & Company's Haigh Brewery. There are also a number of walking trails to enjoy around this area that both residents and visitors love.

Over in Cheshire, Alderley Edge has also piqued the interest of experts, having become a well-known spot for its celebrity residents, notably Manchester United and Manchester City footballers and their families. It's described in the guide as "one of the most expensive and sought-after places to live in the UK outside of London".

Stormy Point, Alderley Edge
Stormy Point, Alderley Edge -Credit:Manchester Evening News

The picturesque village sits in the east of Cheshire and boasts a range of upscale shops, cafes, restaurants and bars. Also known as the Champagne capital of Britain, it sits within the Cheshire 'Golden Triangle' - also known as the 'Footballer Belt' - which also encompasses Prestbury and Wilmslow.

"Alderley Edge has become a favourite location to call home by footballers and TV stars for its high-end shops and private homes," commented Liam Gretton in the write-up. "David and Victoria Beckham have been associated with the area before their move to Spain in 2003."

Britain's Most Desirable Villages in full:

  • Roundhay, West Yorkshire

  • Dirleton, East Lothian

  • Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire

  • Scarcroft, West Yorkshire

  • Newton Linford, Leicestershire

  • Alderley Edge, Cheshire

  • Haigh, Greater Manchester

  • Bishopthorpe, North Yorkshire

  • Abersoch, Gwynedd

  • Solva, Pembrokeshire

  • Shalbourne, Wiltshire

  • Beaulieu, Hampshire

  • Elie, Fife

  • Warkworth, Northumberland

  • Brancepeth, County Durham

  • Ombersley, Worcestershire

  • Virginia Water, Surrey

  • Hightown, Merseyside

  • Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire

  • Sunningdale, Berkshire

  • Kingham, Oxfordshire

  • Biddestone, Wiltshire

  • Shipton Moyne, Gloucestershire

  • Beckington, Somerset

  • Caldy, Merseyside

  • Llandough, Vale of Glamorgan

  • West Kilbride, North Ayrshire

  • Studland, Dorset

  • Barrington, Cambridgeshire

  • Barston, West Midlands