SOUTHAMPTON has been named as one of the best places in the UK for remote workers to turn a hobby into a business.

It came third in a study of the places where residents were best-placed to transform a lockdown pastime into a successful “side hustle”.

Payment platform Dojo scored UK cities according to their population, five-year survival rate for start-ups, internet access, average income, unemployment rate and the number of post offices in the area.

The top place in the league table went to Gloucester, with Norwich in second place and Southampton third. Portsmouth was placed seventh.

Southampton start-ups have better survival rate than most parts of the UK

Dojo’s report said: “For a lot of business owners, coronavirus normalised remote working and flexible shift patterns.

“And while working from home may not be for everyone, it can be beneficial for certain types of people – especially budding entrepreneurs looking to kick start their business.

“Home confinement has left a lot of us searching for ways to kill time. And for some people, that’s meant picking up new hobbies or rekindling old ones.

“The more industrious of those groups have decided that now could be the perfect opportunity to monetise their crochet skills – or penchant for DIY pottery,” the report added.

The researchers found 42 per cent of Southampton start-ups survive for at least five years.

Weekly average pay for full-time work was £632 and average rent for a one-bedroom city flat was £713 and average disposable income per week of £454.

The city had one of the lowest unemployment rates of all the cities studied, with joblessness at 3.7 per cent compared with a national 5.1 per cent.

Southampton had average broadband speeds of 52mbps, the survey said.

Hampshire is home to around 86,000 businesses and the survival rates for new companies are among the highest in the UK.

The quality of life in Southampton earned it a place in the Guardian’s Top 10 Happiest Cities to Work In, in 2016.

Earlier this year, another analysis of official data by CircleLoop found that start-ups in Southampton had a better chance of surviving their first year than in almost anywhere else in the country. There were 1,960 new businesses in the city in 2019 and 930 failures – a “death” rate of 46.02 per cent.