Greater Manchester

Greater Manchester is a metropolitan and ceremonial county in North West England, with a population of 2.8 million;[3] comprising ten metropolitan boroughs: Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford and Wigan. The county was created on 1 April 1974, as a result of the Local Government Act 1972, and has been covered by a combined authority on 1 April 2011. Greater Manchester is formed from parts of the historic counties of Cheshire, Lancashire and the West Riding of Yorkshire.

Greater Manchester
Manchester, the county's most populous settlement
Coordinates: 53°30′N 2°19′W
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Constituent countryEngland
RegionNorth West
Established1 April 1974
Established byLocal Government Act 1972
Time zoneUTC±00:00 (Greenwich Mean Time)
  Summer (DST)UTC+01:00 (British Summer Time)
Members of Parliament
  • 18 Labour
  • 9 Conservative
List of MPs
PoliceGreater Manchester Police
Ceremonial county
Lord LieutenantDiane Hawkins[1]
High SheriffLorraine Worsley-Carter[2] (2022–23)
Area1,276 km2 (493 sq mi)
  Ranked39th of 48
Population (2021)2,812,569
  Ranked3rd of 48
Density2,204/km2 (5,710/sq mi)
Metropolitan county
Government• Type
Combined authority
• Body
Greater Manchester Combined Authority
Mayor
Andy Burnham (L)
ONS code2A
GSS codeE11000001
ITLUKD3
Websitewww.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk
Districts

Districts of Greater Manchester
Metropolitan districts
Districts
  1. City of Manchester
  2. Stockport
  3. Tameside
  4. Oldham
  5. Rochdale
  6. Bury
  7. Bolton
  8. Wigan
  9. City of Salford
  10. Trafford

Greater Manchester spans 493 square miles (1,277 km2),[4] which roughly covers the territory of the Greater Manchester Built-up Area, the second most populous urban area in the UK. Though geographically landlocked, it is connected to the sea by the Manchester Ship Canal which is still open to shipping in Salford and Trafford. Greater Manchester borders the ceremonial counties of Cheshire (to the south-west and south), Derbyshire (to the south-east), West Yorkshire (to the north-east), Lancashire (to the north) and Merseyside (to the west). There is a mix of high-density urban areas, suburbs, semi-rural and rural locations in Greater Manchester, but land use is mostly urban—the product of concentric urbanisation and industrialisation which occurred mostly during the 19th century when the region flourished as the global centre of the cotton industry. It has a focused central business district, formed by Manchester city centre and the adjoining city of Salford and Borough of Trafford, but Greater Manchester is also a polycentric county with ten metropolitan districts, each district is concentrated around a large town or a city (Manchester and Salford being the only cities). These districts contain suburbs, towns and villages for each city and town.

Bolton, one of the large towns of Greater Manchester

Greater Manchester is governed by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), which consists of political leaders from each of the ten metropolitan borough councils, plus a directly elected mayor, with responsibility for economic development, regeneration and transport. Andy Burnham is the inaugural Mayor of Greater Manchester, elected in 2017. For the 12 years following 1974, the county had a two-tier system of local government; district councils shared power with the Greater Manchester County Council. The county council was abolished in 1986 and so its districts (the metropolitan boroughs) effectively became unitary authority areas. However, the metropolitan county continued to exist in law and as a geographic frame of reference,[5] and as a ceremonial county, with a Lord Lieutenant and a High Sheriff. Several county-wide services were coordinated through the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities between 1985 and 2011.

Before the creation of the metropolitan county, the name for the area was "South East Lancashire North East Cheshire" (SELNEC). Greater Manchester is an amalgamation of 70 former local government districts from the former administrative counties of Lancashire, Cheshire, the West Riding of Yorkshire and eight independent county boroughs.[6] Since deindustrialisation in the mid-20th century, Greater Manchester has emerged as a major centre for services, media and digital industries, and is renowned for guitar and dance music and its association football teams.[7]


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