West Midlands (county)

From Academic Kids

West Midlands
Status: Ceremonial county and legal County
Region:West Midlands
- Total
Ranked 42nd
902 km²
ONS code:2E
- Total (2003 est.)
- Density
Ranked 2nd
Ethnicity:80.0% White
13.4% S.Asian
3.7% Afro-Carib.
Members of Parliament

Bob Ainsworth, Adrian Bailey, Richard Burden, Lorely Burt, Liam Byrne, Ross Cranston, Jim Cunningham, Bruce George, Roger Godsiff, Sylvia Heal, John Hemming, Lynne Jones, Khalid Mahmood, Rob Marris, Stephen McCabe, Pat McFadden, Andrew Mitchell, Ian Pearson, Ken Purchase, Geoffrey Robinson, Richard Shepherd, Clare Short, Sin Simon, John Spellar, Caroline Spelman, Gisela Stuart, Lynda Waltho, Tom Watson, David Winnick

Metropolitan boroughs
Missing image

  1. Wolverhampton
  2. Dudley
  3. Walsall
  4. Sandwell
  5. Birmingham
  6. Solihull
  7. Coventry

The County of West Midlands is a metropolitan county in western central England, the United Kingdom, formed in 1974. The county contains the cities of Birmingham, Wolverhampton and Coventry.

It also covers includes major centres such as Solihull, and the Black Country towns of Dudley, Walsall and West Bromwich.

The West Midlands no longer has a county council, as the former West Midlands County Council was abolished in 1986. However the county still exists legally, and is still a ceremonial county with a Lord-Lieutenant.

The name "West Midlands" is also used for the much larger West Midlands region, which sometimes causes some confusion.

The area of the county is sometimes described as the "West Midlands metropolitan area" or the "West Midlands conurbation".



The West Midlands borders the counties of Warwickshire to the east, Worcestershire to the south, and Staffordshire to the north.

The West Midlands is one of the most heavily urbanised counties in the UK. Birmingham, Wolverhampton, the Black Country and Solihull together form the largest conurbation in the UK outside London, with a combined population of around 2.28 million.

The West Midlands is not entirely urban, a stretch of green belt land, roughly 15 miles across known as the "Meriden Gap" exists, separating the Birmingham conurbation from Coventry, which retains a strongly rural character.

A smaller piece of green belt between Birmingham, Walsall and West Bromwich includes Barr Beacon and the Sandwell Valley.


The county was created by the Local Government Act 1972 and came into being in 1974.

The West Midlands took in areas from the historic counties of Warwickshire, Staffordshire and Worcestershire.

Birmingham and Coventry were traditionally in Warwickshire; Wolverhampton and most of the Black Country were in Staffordshire and some of the Black Country was in Worcestershire, many of these were administered as county boroughs.

Main article: History of West Midlands.

Local government

The West Midlands is divided into seven metropolitan boroughs, these are, Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall and Wolverhampton (see map). Three of these boroughs: Birmingham, Coventry and Woverhampton have city status.

For the first twelve years after the West Midlands was created in 1974, the county had a two-tier system of local government, and the boroughs shared power with the West Midlands County Council.

However in 1986, along with five other metropolitan county councils and the Greater London Council, the West Midlands County Council was abolished, and most of its powers were devolved to the boroughs, which became effective unitary authorities.

Despite the abolition of the county council, some local services are still run jointly on a county-wide basis. Including:

These are administered by joint-boards which are made up of councillors appointed from each of the seven West Midlands councils. A number of joint-commitees also exist to co-ordinate matters such as roads and planning.

The boroughs jointly own a share in Birmingham International Airport, which used to be owned by the county council.

Towns and villages

Missing image
Arms of the West Midlands

Places of interest

See also

External links

United Kingdom | England | Ceremonial counties of England Flag of England

Bedfordshire | Berkshire | City of Bristol | Buckinghamshire | Cambridgeshire | Cheshire | Cornwall | Cumbria | Derbyshire | Devon | Dorset | Durham | East Riding of Yorkshire | East Sussex | Essex | Gloucestershire | Greater London | Greater Manchester | Hampshire | Herefordshire | Hertfordshire | Isle of Wight | Kent | Lancashire | Leicestershire | Lincolnshire | City of London | Merseyside | Norfolk | Northamptonshire | Northumberland | North Yorkshire | Nottinghamshire | Oxfordshire | Rutland | Shropshire | Somerset | South Yorkshire | Staffordshire | Suffolk | Surrey | Tyne and Wear | Warwickshire | West Midlands | West Sussex | West Yorkshire | Wiltshire | Worcestershire

de:West Midlands (Metropolitan County)

es:West Midlands no:West Midlands sv:West Midlands (county)


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