South West

South West presents a mixed picture of prosperity with a prosperity score of 0.31.



Household wealth:






Household expenditure:

£529 per week

House prices


Exam achievements


Hours worked:




Business births/deaths


Insolvency rates:

20.6 per 10,000 population

Millionaire numbers:


The South West is the sixth most prosperous region in the UK Prosperity Map, falling two places since last year’s ranking, with a mixed picture for the region emerging from macroeconomic indicators.

A healthy housing market is contributing to levels of prosperity. Average house prices have increased by 5% to reach £247,798 – the fourth highest in the country. GDP has grown by 2.0%, the fifth-highest GDP per capita, at £23,031.

The region enjoys the third lowest rate of unemployment at just 4.1%. However, this has increased by 2% in the last year, the largest increase of any region in the UK. The South West’s mixed fortunes continue with household expenditure: on average, households are spending £529 a week, down 0.8% from last year. This is the fourth-highest in the UK, but it’s one of only three places that have seen weekly expenditure fall – the West Midlands and North East experiencing decreases of 0.1% and 0.9% respectively.

Bristol’s GDP per capita is slightly higher than the region as a whole, at £30,850. It’s also proving attractive to businesses and has a thriving start-up scene – while the region is 10th nationally for business birth-to-death ratio at 1.35, Bristol has a ratio of 1.53 created for every one that ‘dies’. This is the seventh-highest amongst UK cities, ranking above Cambridge (1.44), Cardiff (1.51) and Newcastle (1.31).

There are now 52,500 millionaires living in the region, an increase of 10.5% since last year. This accounts for 8.4% of all millionaires in the country and a 0.2% increase in share on last year.

UK Prosperity Map

The Barclays UK Prosperity Map is an in-depth view of the different prosperity drivers across the UK regions. The map compiles different measures gleaned from official data – including GDP, employment, enterprise figures, household expenditure and number of millionaires – to give an overall score for each region.

About this research

The UK Prosperity Map is an annual piece of research compiled by Opinium on behalf of Barclays Wealth & Investments. It ranks UK regions and cities in terms of their affluence. A Prosperity Index score has been calculated by Opinium for each UK city and region. In addition, data provided by Wealth-X calculates UK millionaire numbers. The index uses third party figures on the factors listed below: