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Regional Lifestyles Survey

The Regional Lifestyles Survey (2005)

The Regional Lifestyles Survey, completed in 2005, has produced some interesting results about the people living in our County.

The Regional Lifestyles Survey was co-funded by a number of regional and sub-regional partners including Worcestershire County Council and public health organisations. The survey was sent to 17,827 people across Worcestershire and a total of 6,581 completed surveys were returned by the closing date, representing a response rate of 36.9%. Response rates by district were as follows:

  • Redditch 40% response rate
  • Wychavon 39% response rate
  • Bromsgrove 38% response rate
  • Malvern Hills 35% response rate
  • Worcester city 35% response rate
  • Wyre Forest 34% response rate

The survey asked respondents a broad range of questions to do with their lifestyle, including questions about people's local area and neighbourhood, crime and community safety, diet and exercise, smoking, alcohol and recycling.

Since the results were released the Research and Intelligence team have been busy analysing and interpreting the results. Here are some of the most interesting statistics:

Quality of Life

  • 85% of respondents are satisfied with their neighbourhood as a place to live
  • In terms of community cohesion, 46% of respondents felt that by acting together the people in their neighbourhood could influence decisions affecting their local area.
  • Respondents were asked how strongly they feel they belong to Worcestershire, 15% of respondents said they feel very strongly part of Worcestershire and 37% said they feel fairly strongly part of Worcestershire. See Graph below

Quality of Life

Crime and Comunity Safety

  • The percentage of respondents feeling safe in their neighbourhood during the day was much higher than those feeling safe at night. 92% of respondents feel safe in their own home and 90% feel safe in their neighbourhood during the day, at night these percentages drop to 86% and 71% respectively.
  • In terms of public perception of crime, 24% of respondents think crime has increased in their local neighbourhood over the last 2 years. This is encouraging when compared to findings from the most recent British Crime Survey, which show that 42% of people think crime in their local area has increased over the previous 2 years.
  • Previous experience as a victim of crime has a significant effect on respondents feelings of safety. 86% of non burglary victims felt safe in their own home after dark, this percentage dropped to 78% for those respondents who have been a victim of burglary. Looking at victims and non-victims of violence, 71% of non victims feel safe in their neighbourhood after dark compared to 56% of victims. See graph below.

Crime and Community safety

  • Results show that 5% of 18-24 year olds have been a victim of robbery or muggings. While this figure is relatively low, it is still more than double the number of victims in any other age group.
  • A higher proportion of young people have been victims of violence compared to other age groups. 11% of respondents aged 18-24 have been a victim of violence compared to less than 4% in any other age group.

Diet and Physical Exercise

  • 74% of respondents consider themselves to have a healthy diet.
  • Just under half (49%) of respondents are overweight or obese according to Body Mass Index calculations. 65% of respondents who are obese said they have a healthy diet.

Body Mass Index Calculation

  • 10% more female respondents eat the recommended daily amount of fruit and vegetables than males (35% and 24% respectively).
  • Although the numbers are relatively low, more than twice as many males as females reported eating fried food at least 3 times a week (11% and 4% respectively). This was also the case for those eating takeaway meals at least 3 times weekly.
  • Twice as many Birmingham respondents ate fried food at least 3 times a week compared to those living in Worcestershire (14% and 7% respectively).
  • Those respondents who were single had significantly worse diets than married respondents. Only 23% of singles strongly agreed they had a healthy diet compared to 43% of those who were married. Twice as many single people ate fried food and takeaway meals at least 3 times weekly compared to their married counterparts. Only 20% of single respondents ate the recommended daily amount of fruit and vegetables; this figure stood at 34% for married respondents.
  • However, single respondents are more physically active than those who are married. 10% more married respondents reported doing no physical exercise than singles (26% compared to 16%).


  • 19% of respondents currently smoke cigarettes. The percentage of respondents who smoke cigarettes decreases with age, see graph below.


  • Approximately a third (34%) of respondents have given up smoking tobacco products. The percentage of people who have given up smoking tobacco products increases with age. See graph below

Tobacco Users

  • Over half (60%) of respondents who currently smoke said they would like to give up.

Passive Smoking

  • 38% of respondents said they rarely spend time anywhere that people are smoking
  • 27% of respondents spend time in pubs and clubs where people are smoking. However the percentage is much higher amongst young people; 63% of 18-24 year olds spend time with people who are smoking in pubs and clubs compared to 40% of 25-34 year olds, 30% of 35-44 year olds, 30% of 45-54 year olds, 27% of 55-64 year olds and just 15% of those aged 65 and above.

Alcohol and Binge Drinking

  • Respondents were asked to specify how many days in the week before they completed the survey they had drunk alcohol. The highest percentage (21%) had drunk alcohol on 2 days during the week. 13% of respondents drank on every day during the week. See graph below

Alcohol Consumption

Please note: The following statistics about alcohol and binge drinking refer to all people who drink alcohol

  • Wine and beer were the most popular drinks. Over 50% of respondents had drunk wine or beer in the week prior to completing this survey. 28% of respondents had drunk spirits or liquors and 8% of respondents had drunk alcopops.
  • Over a quarter of respondents (28%) were classed as binge drinkers. The levels of binge drinking were similar for Worcestershire respondents as for those living in Birmingham.
  • A much higher percentage of young people were classed as binge drinkers. See graph below

Binge Drinking

  • 35% of males were classed as binge drinkers compared to 19% of females.
  • 26% of binge drinkers also smoke cigarettes, compared to 16% of non-binge drinkers.


  • 8% of respondents take their paper and card to a recycling centre at a Council tip to be recycled and 9% take it to a recycling bank which is not at a Council tip. However, 80% of respondents have their paper and card collected by a Council doorstep collection.
  • The top three reasons why people say they do not recycle are:

                   Do not have space to store things for recycling (23%)
                   Do not know where to take things to be recycled (14%)
                   Do not have enough time to recycle (10%)

This data has been weighted using a Regional Weighting.

For more information contact the Claire Bloss, Principal Research Analyst on 01905 822020 or email

Further Information

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This page was last reviewed 7 February 2014 at 18:00.
The page is next due for review 6 August 2015.