List of cities in the United Kingdom

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For a list of the largest urban areas in the UK, including conurbations, see List of urban areas in the United Kingdom.

This is a list of cities in the United Kingdom, as of 2013. It lists those places that have been granted city status by letters patent or royal charter. In some cases, the area holding city status does not coincide with the built up area or conurbation of which it forms part. In the case of Greater London, for example, only the City of London and City of Westminster hold city status. In other cases, the status can extend to include a number of towns and rural areas within the local government district containing the main settlement after which it is named. Examples include the City of Canterbury and City of Lancaster.[1]

The column headed Cathedral shows the applicable cathedrals that were the grounds for the granting of city status in the case of cities recognised prior to 1888 (i.e., cathedrals of the Church of England, including cathedrals that are now part of the Church in Wales or pre-Reformation cathedrals in the Church of Scotland). Certain cities also have Roman Catholic cathedrals, but these are not listed.

As from 1888, the presence of a cathedral ceased to be a relevant factor in granting city status and all entries after this date are, therefore, marked not applicable. Cathedrals erected in cities since 1888 are Birmingham Cathedral, Bradford Cathedral, Derby Cathedral, Leicester Cathedral, Newport Cathedral, Portsmouth Cathedral and Sheffield Cathedral, while Llandaff Cathedral was included within the boundaries of the city of Cardiff in 1922. In Ireland, possession of a diocesan cathedral has never (except in the anomalous case of Armagh) been sufficient to attain city status.[citation needed]

There are currently a total of 69 official cities in the United Kingdom (51 in England, 5 in Northern Ireland, 7 in Scotland and 6 in Wales).[2]

There are a number of cities in the British Overseas Territories, such as Jamestown;[3] these are however not part of the United Kingdom.


City[2]Year granted city statusCathedral (pre-1888)City councilImagePopulation
Bath1 time immemorialBath Abbey4Charter trusteesBath, Somerset Panorama - April 2011.jpg83,992[citation needed] Urban area (2010 estimate): 97,311[4]
Birmingham2 188933not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Birmingham Skyline from Edgbaston Cricket Ground crop.jpg1,092,330 (2013)[5]
Bradford1 1897not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Bradford City Hall from National Media Museum.jpg522,452 (2011)[6]
Brighton & Hove15 2000not applicableLocal government district
Brighton.UK.JPG273,369 (2011)[6]
Bristol1 1542Bristol CathedralLocal government district
(Unitary and county)
Bristol cityscape.jpg428,234 (2011)[6]
Cambridge3 195125not applicableLocal government districtKingsCollegeChapelWest.jpg123,867 (2011)[6]
Canterbury3 time immemorialCanterbury CathedralLocal government district
(Non-metropolitan borough)
View of the city from Augustine House - - 1713552.jpg151,145 (2011)[6]
Carlisle1 1158Carlisle CathedralLocal government districtCarlisle Cathedral from the Air.jpg107,524 (2011)[6]
Chelmsford37 2012not applicableLocal government district
(Non-metropolitan borough)
Chelmsfordcath.jpg168,310 (2011)[6]
Chester3 1541Chester CathedralCharter trusteesBridge Street, Chester.jpg90,925[citation needed] Urban area (2010 estimate): 91,733[4]
Chichester1 time immemorialChichester CathedralCivil parishChichester Cathedral epodkopaev.jpg25,749 (2010)[7]
Coventry1 time immemorialCoventry Cathedral5Local government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Skyline of Coventry as seen from Baginton 3g06.JPG316,915 (2011)[6]
Derby13 1977not applicableLocal government district
Iron Gate, Derby - - 587015.jpg248,752 (2011)[6]
Durham1 time immemorialDurham CathedralCharter trusteesDurham Cathedral from the train viaduct.jpg94,375 (2011)[8]
Ely1 time immemorialEly CathedralCivil parishEly Cathedral From Air.jpg20,240 (2010)[7]
Exeter1 time immemorialExeter CathedralLocal government districtExeter from Haldon.jpg117,773 (2011)[6]
Gloucester1 1541Gloucester CathedralLocal government districtGloucester and its cathedral - - 1454853.jpg121,688 (2011)[6]
Hereford119 time immemorialHereford CathedralCivil parishHereford cathedral 002.JPG58,896 (2011)[9]
Kingston upon Hull12 1897not applicableLocal government district
Hull from Paull.jpg256,406 (2011)[6]
Lancaster1 193726not applicableLocal government districtCity of Lancaster (2).jpg138,375 (2011)[6]
Leeds1 1893not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
LeedsSkyline2013.jpg751,485 (2011)[6]
Leicester1 191922not applicableLocal government district
Leicester City Skyline - - 514032.jpg329,839 (2011)[6]
Lichfield17 time immemorialLichfield CathedralCivil parishLichfield Cityscape.jpg31,068 (2010)[7]
Lincoln3 time immemorialLincoln CathedralLocal government district
(Non-metropolitan borough)
Cathedral and Castle Square - - 134108.jpg93,541 (2011)[6]
Liverpool2 1880Liverpool Cathedral (1880)Local government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Pier Head and Mersey Ferry Liverpool.jpg466,415 (2011)[6]
City of London6 time immemorialSt Paul's CathedralLocal government districtCity of London skyline from London City Hall - Oct 2008.jpg7,375 (2011)[6]
Manchester1 185334Manchester Cathedral (1847)Local government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Manchester Skyline.jpg503,127 (2011)[6]
Newcastle upon Tyne1 1882Newcastle Cathedral (1882)Local government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Bridges opening up - - 178375.jpg280,177 (2011)[6]
Norwich1 time immemorialNorwich CathedralLocal government districtNorwich Skyline.jpg132,512 (2011)[6]
Nottingham1 1897not applicableLocal government district
Clipston Nottingham.JPG305,680 (2011)[6]
Oxford1 1542Christ Church CathedralLocal government districtOxford from Boars Hill.jpg151,906 (2011)[6]
Peterborough2 1541Peterborough CathedralLocal government district
Peterborough Cathedral oblique view.jpg183,631 (2011)[6]
Plymouth1 192827not applicableLocal government district
Plymouth from Mount Batten - - 1580485.jpg256,384 (2011)[6]
Portsmouth1 192624not applicableLocal government district
Portsmouthskyline.jpg205,056 (2011)[6]
Preston14 2002not applicableLocal government districtPreston City Centre.jpg140,202 (2011)[6]
Ripon1 1836Ripon Cathedral (1836)Civil parishRiponMarket.jpg17,193 (2010)[7]
Salford1 192624not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Mariners Canal from Waterfront Quay, Salford Quays.jpg233,933 (2011)[6]

(formally known as New Sarum until 2009)

1227Salisbury CathedralCivil parishSalisbury Cathedral.jpg39,896 (2010)[7]
Sheffield3 1893not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
PeaceGdnsSheffd.jpg552,698 (2011)[6]
Southampton1 1964not applicableLocal government district
Southampton from Aurora 01.JPG236,882 (2011)[6]
St Albans7 187736St Albans Cathedral (1876)Local government district
(Non-metropolitan borough)
Cathedral.png140,644 (2011)[6]
Stoke-on-Trent3 192528not applicableLocal government district
Hanley City - - 155173.jpg249,008 (2011)[6]
Sunderland18 1992not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
SunderlandBridges.jpg275,506 (2011)[6]
Truro1 1877Truro Cathedral (1877)Civil parishTruro stmarysst.jpg19,382 (2010)[7]
Wakefield3 1888Wakefield Cathedral (1888)Local government district
(Metropolitan borough)
Wakefield County Hall.jpg325,837 (2011)[6]
Wells1 1205Wells CathedralCivil parishWells main street arp.jpg10,491 (2010)[7]
City of Westminster21 1540Westminster Abbey4Local government district
(London borough)
Hdr parliament.jpg219,396 (2011)[6]
Winchester1 time immemorialWinchester CathedralLocal government district
(Non-metropolitan borough)
Winchester 13.JPG116,595 (2011)[6]
Wolverhampton16 2000not applicableLocal government district
(Metropolitan borough)
St Peter's Church, Wolverhampton.jpg249,470 (2011)[6]
Worcester3 time immemorialWorcester CathedralLocal government districtRiver Severn, Worcester - - 894221.jpg98,768 (2011)[6]
York18 time immemorialYork MinsterLocal government district
York Minster from the Lendal Bridge.jpg198,051 (2011)[6]


CityYear granted
city status
City councilImagePopulation
(Scots: Aiberdeen)
(Scottish Gaelic: Obar Dheathain)
city status confirmed 189131
(royal burgh 1179)
St Machar's CathedralLocal government districtAberdeen from Torry - - 1454885.jpg189,12038
(Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Dèagh)
(royal burgh 1191)
not applicableLocal government districtMidsummer night^ - - 9752.jpg153,99038
(Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Èideann)
accepted as city by ancient usage by the eighteenth century
and confirmed in subsequent local government legislation[10]
(royal burgh 1329)
St. Giles' CathedralLocal government districtEdinburgh from Calton Hill with Dugald Stewart Monument 3.JPG468,72038
(Scots: Glesga)
(Scottish Gaelic: Glaschu)
accepted as city by ancient usage by the eighteenth century
and confirmed in subsequent local government legislation[10]
(royal burgh 1492)
St. Mungo's CathedralLocal government district(looking down) Buchannan Street, Glasgow.jpg589,90038
(Scottish Gaelic: Inbhir Nis)
2000not applicablenoneInverness view 3.jpg57,960[11]
(Scots: Pairth)
(Scottish Gaelic: Peairt)
(city status had previously been held by the Royal Burgh of Perth, created in the twelfth century and abolished in 1975.[13])
not applicablenonePerthScotland.jpg45,77038
(Scots: Stirlin)
(Scottish Gaelic: Sruighlea)
2002not applicablenoneStirling(DonaldMacDonald)Dec2005.jpg34,79038


CityYear granted
city status
City councilImagePopulation
Bangor1 time immemorialBangor CathedralCommunityBangor from Bangor-mountain.jpg14,875 (2010)[7]
(Welsh: Caerdydd)
190529not applicableLocal government districtCardiff City Hall cropped.jpg346,090 (2011)[6]
2002not applicableLocal government districtNewportciviccentre.jpg145,736 (2011)[6]
St Asaph37
2012not applicableCommunitySt Asaph, Cathedral.jpg3,444 (2010)[7]
St David's20
1994not applicableCommunitySt.Davids, Wales, UK.jpg1,661 (2010)[7]
196923not applicableLocal government districtSwansea Railway Station - - 1484946.jpg239,023 (2011)[6]

Northern Ireland[edit]

CityYear granted city statusCity councilImagePopulation
(Irish: Ard Mhacha)
(Ulster-Scots: Airmagh)
1994Local government districtThe Mall, Armagh.jpg59,340 (2011)[14]
(Irish: Béal Feirste)
(Ulster-Scots: Bilfawst)
1888Local government districtBelfast City Hall 2.jpg280,962 (2011)[14]
(Irish: Doire / Doire Cholmchille)
Derrie / Lunnonderrie)
1604[15]Local government districtSt Eugene's Cathedral, August 2009.JPG107,877 (2011)[14]
(Irish: Lios na gCearrbhach)
2002Local government districtIrish Linen Centre Lisburn Museum.jpg120,165 (2011)[14]
(Irish: Iúr Cinn Trá)
(Ulster-Scots: Newrie)

See also[edit]



  1. ^ Beckett, John (2005). City Status in the British Isles: 1830 - 2002. Ashgate Publishing. ISBN 9780754650676. 
  2. ^ a b Government list
  3. ^ The St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Constitution Order 2009 "...and declared Jamestown to be a city called the “City of James Town”" (Schedule Preamble)
  4. ^ a b The population of these unparished areas was not published in the results of the 2011 census. "Mid 2010 Urban Area Estimates England and Wales". Office for National Statistics. 4 September 2012. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  5. ^ "UK Population Estimates". [Office for National Statistics|ONS]. Retrieved 28 June 2014
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap "2011 Census: KS101EW Usual resident population, local authorities in England and Wales". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Civil Parish population estimates in England and Wales, mid-2010". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  8. ^ City status extends to the area of the former District of Durham [http://www "Charter trust and Mayor for Durham City"]. Durham County Council. Retrieved 2 February 2013.  "2011 Census Statistical Profile". Durham County Council. Retrieved 2 February 2013. 
  9. ^ "2011 Census: Usual resident population estimates by broad age group for Wards & Market Towns in Herefordshire". Herefordshire Council. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  10. ^ a b Beckett, J. V. (2005). City status in the British Isles, 1830-2002. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. pp. 16–17. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  11. ^ From NRS 2010 mid-year estimates, population of Inverness including Culloden - "Highland Profile". Highland Council. Retrieved 9 March 2012. 
  12. ^ Letters Patent dated 21 May 2012 "News: The National Records of Scotland seals Perth's city status". National Archives of Scotland. 6 July 2012.  "'We really feel part of history being made' — Letters Patent makes Perth's city status official". The Courier. 5 July 2012. Retrieved 5 July 2012. 
  13. ^ The term "civitas" or "city" had been used in early charters of the Royal Burgh of Perth. The royal burgh had been created at some date in the King David I (1124-53) and the earliest surviving charter dates from 1209 or 1210. A A M Duncan (24 March 1973). "Perth. The First Century of the Burgh". Transactions of the Perthshire Society of Natural Science.  J V Beckett (2005). City Status in the British Isles, 1830-2002. Ashgate. pp. 16–17. ISBN 9780754650676. 
  14. ^ a b c d "Usual Resident Population: KS101NI (administrative geographies)". Census 2011. Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency. Retrieved 4 October 2013. 
  15. ^ City commemorates the 400th Anniversary of the City’s first charter, Derry City Council press release dated 7 July 2004, (accessed 15 December 2007)
  16. ^ "Local Government (Structural Changes) (Miscellaneous Amendments and Other Provision) Order 2009". Tow. Office of Public Sector Information. 2009. Retrieved 27 February 2009. 
  17. ^ "New Parish Council for the City of Salisbury". Towards One Council. Wiltshire County Council. Retrieved 27 February 2009. 
  18. ^ The London Gazette: no. 46255. p. 4400. 4 April 1974. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
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  20. ^ The London Gazette: no. 46334. p. 7419. 31 May 1974. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
  21. ^ The London Gazette: no. 46352. p. 7920. 24 September 1974. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
  22. ^ a b The London Gazette: no. 54363. p. 4925. 4 April 1996. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
  23. ^ The London Gazette: no. 46522. p. 3729. 20 March 1975. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
  24. ^ The London Gazette: no. 47246. p. 7656. 14 June 1977. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
  25. ^ The London Gazette: no. 56573. p. 6160. 21 May 2002. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  26. ^ a b The London Gazette: no. 56109. p. 1431. 2 May 2001. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  27. ^ The London Gazette: no. 48364. p. 15451. 7 November 1980. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  28. ^ Lichfield City Council website
  29. ^ The London Gazette: no. 52874. p. 5413. 26 March 1992. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  30. ^ Charters of Hereford City Council
  31. ^ Samuel Lewis (ed.), Dale - St. David's, from A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (1849), accessdate=2008-05-15
  32. ^ Municipal Corporations Act 1883 (c.19), S.3 and Sch II, part I
  33. ^ The London Gazette: no. 53798. p. 13403. 23 September 1994. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  34. ^ The London Gazette: no. 27242. p. 6613. 30 October 1900. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  35. ^ The Times: Leicester, a City: Sequel to the Recent Royal Visit, 17 June 1919
  36. ^ Civic history: The making of a City, (Leicester City Council), accessed 14 February 2008
  37. ^ Leicester: The Dignity of a City 655–1926, Leicester's city status, its loss and its regaining over thirteen centuries by Daniel Williams
  38. ^ The London Gazette: no. 44986. p. 12450. 12 December 1969. Retrieved 21 April 2008.
  39. ^ The London Gazette: no. 33154. pp. 2776–2777. 23 April 1926. Retrieved 18 April 2008.
  40. ^ London Gazette, issue no.39201, 13 April 1951
  41. ^ London Gazette, issue no.34400, 21 May 1937
  42. ^ London Gazette, issue no.33433, 26 October 1928
  43. ^ London Gazette, issue no.33063, 3 July 1925
  44. ^ The London Gazette: no. 27849. p. 7249. 31 October 1905. Retrieved 22 April 2008.
  45. ^ London Gazette, 29 January 1889
  46. ^ From the London Gazette, January 18, 1889, The Times, 19 January 1889
  47. ^ London Gazette Issue 21426, p.950, 1 April 1853
  48. ^ The London Gazette: no. 59250. p. 20329. 24 November 2009.
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  51. ^ The London Gazette: no. 60167. p. 11125. 11 June 2012.
  52. ^ "Mid-2010 Population Estimates for Settlements and Localities in Scotland". General Register Office for Scotland. General Register Office for Scotland. 2012. Retrieved 1 December 2012.