The UK cities where women earn the highest salaries

·3 min read
Photo credit: The Body Shop
Photo credit: The Body Shop

The cost of living continues to rise all over the UK. Inflation, which is driven by high fuel and energy prices, reached a 30-year high of 6.2% in March this year. And it seems that women are bearing the brunt of these increases – according to the Living Wage Foundation, one fifth of women, that's 20.4%, are paid below the living wage (£9.90 in the UK and £11.05 in London) compared to 14% of men.

There's also what's known as ‘she-flation’. According to SpareRoom, more than 85% of women spend 30% or more of their income on rent in comparison to 75% of men. Food shops are set to rise by £180 per year, but for women, there's also the extra amount we pay for everyday products and services, also known as the 'pink tax'. It was uncovered in a 1994 report when California's Assembly Office of Research found that 64% of stores in five major cities in the US charged more to wash and dry clean a woman's blouse than they did a man's shirt. And recent research by Red magazine, showed that products across a range of categories, from clothing to personal care, are still 32% more expensive for women in the UK.

With this in mind, The Body Shop has analysed 30 cities in the UK to uncover which ones pay women the highest salaries. They found that London pays women the most with an average of £45,500, however standard cost of living in London is up to 58% more expensive than other UK urban areas. Derby was the highest paying city outside of London, paying £37,900 on average – £1,900 more than joint third places Newcastle and Chelmsford. The lowest paying city for women was found to be Sunderland at £26,600.

“When women have equal rights, education, and opportunity it’s better for everyone," said a spokesperson for The Body Shop. "We know there's a lot of work to do when it comes to female empowerment but we're happy to see the cities which are taking steps in the right direction. We can’t wait to see what the women in these cities achieve.”

Here's the top ten highest paying cities for women:

London, average yearly salary for women: £45,500

Derby, average yearly salary for women: £37,800

Newcastle, average yearly salary for women: £35,900

Chelmsford, average yearly salary for women: £35,900

Bristol, average yearly salary for women: £35,500

Winchester, average yearly salary for women: £35,400

Oxford, average yearly salary for women: £35,300

Cambridge, average yearly salary for women: £34,500

Southampton, average yearly salary for women: £34,200

Manchester, average yearly salary for women: £34,100

The findings form part of The Body Shop's wider research on the most empowering places for women to live. They looked at 40 cities in the UK against a series of metrics, including the female population, the number of women in higher education, the number of universities with women enrolled, the average salary for women, as well as the number of women’s social groups. Find out more here.

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