Cities in Italy have the highest percentage of residents at retirement-age in Europe.

According to the Eurostats survey, Urban Audit, nine out of the ten cities with the oldest populations (old being defined as those over 65 years of age) are Italian.

Trieste leads with 27 per cent of its residents over 65, ahead of Genoa with 26.7 per cent, Bologna with 26.5 per cent, Florence with 25.8 per cent, Venice with 24.8 per cent and Cremona with 24.7 per cent. After Lisbon with 24.2 per cent, follow Ancona 24.1 per cent, Turin 23.5 per cent and Milan 23.3 per cent. Rome is not included in the top ten.

Italian cities also lead in the rates of car theft, with Caserta registering an average of 15.3 reports of stolen vehicles per 1,000 residents, followed by Catania, Naples, Turin, Rome and Milan flowed by Manchester, Catanzaro, Nottingham and Kingston (UK).

Italy also boasts the city with the greatest number of cinema per capita, Ancona, with 129.6 cinema seats per 1,000 residents.

Urban Audit released by the European statistics bureau, Eurostat, compares quality of life for 357 cities in the European Union, Turkey, Norway and Switzerland between 2003 and 2006. The study examines indicators, ranging from crime and unemployment to weather and number of cinemas.

As of 2006, 74 per cent of all Europeans lived in towns or cities with 5,000 or more residents leaving just over a quarter in rural areas.