UK city crowned ‘prettiest in the world’ - putting Venice in second place

4 December 2023, 19:06 | Updated: 4 December 2023, 19:09

A UK city has been crowned the prettiest in the world, according to a study.
A UK city has been crowned the prettiest in the world, according to a study. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

A UK city has been awarded the title of ‘prettiest in the world’ - putting Venice in second place.

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Researchers carried out a mathematical formula to determine which city has the most pleasing architecture in the world according to the ‘golden ration’.

Those involved used Google Street View to conduct the study, scanning buildings all over the world and using mathematical equations to determine how many buildings met the golden ratio - and calculations found that Chester came out on top.

Chester is an ancient city boasting a Romanic history dating back to the first century.

It has Britain’s largest Roman Amphitheatre, the country’s oldest racecourse and a 1000-year-old cathedral.

And now it can add the world’s prettiest city to its list of accolades, as the study suggests Chester has the highest percentage of buildings that meet the ‘golden ration’, according to The Mirror.

Buildings, or architectural structures that meet the golden ratio are a reflection of “natural aesthetic perfection”.

The golden ratio can be used to measure buildings, landmarks, as well artwork, in fact some of Leonardo da Vinci’s creations have been measured with it.

Chester received 83.7 per cent in the study, closely followed by Venice with 83.3 per cent and London with 82.

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Chester is home to Britain's largest Roman Amphitheatre.
Chester is home to Britain's largest Roman Amphitheatre. Picture: Alamy

“Almost 100 years ago, Britain’s leading travel writer HV Morton, wrote about visiting the city, in his phenomenally popular travelogue 'In Search of England’,” Dr Rebecca Andrew, Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Chester said.

“He described the uniqueness of the city and its buildings; ‘there is nothing like it in any English town - the Chester Rows’.”

Morton was captivated by Chester and the history behind its structures, also noting that “no-one considered it strange" to cosy up with a coffee in medieval crypt.

This 13th-century crypt belonged to the Browns of Chester department store, often described as the ‘Harrods of the North’, one of its key selling points.

Chester also boasts some of Europe’s most impressive medieval carvings, as well as 700-year-old Rows galleries.