Portsmouth in ‘50 worst places’ list

Portsmouth Guildhall
Portsmouth Guildhall
From left, Jacob Kennard, Gavin Moon, Ian Doyle and Sarah Talboys-Smith with Shanon Rees and Rodney Watson at the front
 at the Southsea Village in Palmerston Road Picture: Habibur Rahman

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CLAIMS that Portsmouth is among the top 50 worst places to live in the country were dismissed today by the city council’s leader.

The city has been nominated to appear in 50 Crap Towns Returns – a follow-on from Crap Towns: The 50 worst places to live in the UK and Crap Towns II: The Nation Decides.

Southampton, Andover and Four Marks are also set to appear.

The new book, written by freelance journalist Sam Jordison and co-author Dan Kieran, will be published on September 26.

Gerald Vernon-Jackson, leader of Portsmouth City Council, said: ‘I think he’s wrong.

‘The public clearly think he’s wrong because they keep coming back here in their hundreds of thousands.’

He added: ‘I wonder if he’s ever bothered to come here.

‘When people come to visit Portsmouth, they are amazed by the change in the place in the last 10 years.

‘The city has so many attractions to visit.

‘Inevitably, it’s not perfect and there’s always more to do.

‘But we have unemployment that’s lower than other places, we have education results that are getting better and better.

‘We have a wonderful seafront. We have the naval base which is now secure and that’s a brilliant attraction.

‘I am not sure how he can be right when we have eight million visitor days in Portsmouth every year.’

Portsmouth was nominated and voted for the ‘accolade’ on website craptowns.wordpress.com as well as Twitter and Facebook.

Mr Jordison said: ‘Inclusion is mainly decided by vote - but of course because every town is different in size, we have to weight them a bit according to population. There’s also the fact that the best entries attract the most attention, both from us and online, so in a way, appearing in a book is a compliment. It’s proof that someone in the town can write well and amusingly.’