The Info List - London Commuter Belt

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The London
commuter belt is a metropolitan area that includes London and its surrounding commuter zone (the area in which it is practical to commute to work in London). It is also known as the London metropolitan area,[1] or Southeast metropolitan area.[2] It should not be confused with Greater London
Greater London
or the Greater London
Greater London
Built-up Area. The most up-to-date population figures are from Eurostat, that the London
metropolitan area is the largest in the EU with a population of 13,709,128 (in 2011, provisionally 14,431,830 in 2016).[3]


1 Scope 2 Definitions

2.1 Travel to Work Area 2.2 Environs of Greater London 2.3 London's Larger Urban Zone 2.4 Urban areas within the commuter belt

3 See also 4 References 5 External links

Scope[edit] The boundaries are not fixed; they expand as transport options improve and affordable housing moves further away from city centre.[4] The belt currently covers much of the South East region and part of the East of England
East of England
region, including the home counties of Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Surrey, Kent
and Essex, and, by several definitions, Hampshire, West Sussex, East Sussex
East Sussex
and Bedfordshire. The population of Greater London
Greater London
and those counties adjacent to the green belt was 18,868,800 in 2011. Much of the undeveloped part of this area lies within the designated Metropolitan Green Belt, which covers nearly all of Surrey, eastern Berkshire, southern Buckinghamshire, southern and mid Hertfordshire, southern Bedfordshire, south-west Essex, and western Kent. In addition, three Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (the Chiltern Hills, Surrey
Hills and North Downs AONBs) surrounding the Thames basin are within the commuter belt. Definitions[edit] Travel to Work Area[edit]

The London
Travel to Work Area
Travel to Work Area
in 2001 (dark blue), with the administrative boundary of Greater London
Greater London

The London
Travel to Work Area, defined by the Office for National Statistics as the area for which "of the resident economically active population, at least 75% actually work in the area, and also, that of everyone working in the area, at least 75% actually live in the area."[5] has a population of 9,294,800 (2005 estimate).[6] Environs of Greater London[edit] There are 17 local government districts that share a boundary with Greater London, in the East and South East regions. Most districts are entirely, or have sections, within the M25 motorway
M25 motorway
or are within 15–20 miles (24–32 km) of Charing Cross. Adjacent districts often share characteristics of Outer London, such as forming part of the continuous urban sprawl, being served by the London
Underground, being covered by the London
telephone area code, (until 2000) forming part of the Metropolitan Police District
Metropolitan Police District
and having a relatively high employed population working in London. London's Larger Urban Zone[edit] Larger Urban Zone is a definition created by Eurostat
that measures the population and expanse of metropolitan areas across European countries. The population of London's Larger Urban Zone is 11.9 million (2004),[7] ranking it as the largest metropolitan area in the European Union. The districts that are considered parts of this Larger Urban Zone are listed here:[8] no districts in Bedfordshire, Hampshire
or Sussex
are included. Several large conurbations fall just outside the zone: Reading, Luton, High Wycombe and significant parts of the Aldershot
and Crawley
Urban Areas.

Region County Districts within London's larger urban zone Districts outside London's larger urban zone

East Hertfordshire

Broxbourne East Hertfordshire Dacorum Hertsmere Three Rivers Stevenage St Albans Watford Welwyn Hatfield

North Hertfordshire


Basildon Brentwood Castle Point Chelmsford Epping Forest Harlow Maldon Rochford Southend-on-Sea Thurrock Uttlesford

Braintree Colchester Tendring

South East Kent

Dartford Gravesham Maidstone Medway Tonbridge
and Malling Tunbridge Wells Sevenoaks

Ashford Canterbury Dover Folkestone and Hythe Swale Thanet


Elmbridge Epsom
and Ewell Guildford Mole Valley Reigate
and Banstead Runnymede Spelthorne Surrey
Heath Tandridge Woking



Forest Slough Windsor and Maidenhead

Reading West Berkshire Wokingham


Chiltern South Bucks

Vale Wycombe Milton Keynes

Urban areas within the commuter belt[edit]

The urban area of London
(grey) extends beyond the London
boundary. The M25 is also shown. The 020
telephone dialling code is shown in red.

The following table lists urban areas (also known as built-up areas) considered part of the London
Commuter Belt with populations over 20,000.[9][10]

Rank Urban Area[11] Population (2011 Census)[11]


1 Greater London
Greater London
Urban Area 9,787,426 Greater London

2 Reading/ Wokingham
Urban Area 318,014 Berkshire

3 Southend Urban Area 295,310 Essex

4 Luton/ Dunstable
Urban Area 258,018 Bedfordshire

5 Aldershot
Urban Area 252,397 Hampshire

6 Medway
Towns Urban Area 243,391 Kent

7 Basildon/Wickford 216,486 Essex

8 Slough
Urban Area 163,777 Berkshire

9 Crawley
Urban Area 180,457 West Sussex

10 High Wycombe
High Wycombe
Urban Area 133,204 Buckinghamshire

11 Chelmsford 111,511 Essex

12 Maidstone 107,627 Kent

13 Stevenage 90,232 Hertfordshire

14 Grays/Tilbury 89,755 Essex

15 Aylesbury 74,748 Buckinghamshire

16 Royal Tunbridge Wells 68,910 Kent

17 Maidenhead 64,831 Berkshire

18 Welwyn Urban Area 59,910 Hertfordshire

19 Reigate/Redhill 56,621 Surrey

20 Brentwood 52,586 Essex

21 Horsham 51,472 West Sussex

22 Amersham/Chesham 46,122 Buckinghamshire

23 Hertford/Ware 45,457 Hertfordshire

24 Letchworth/Baldock 43,529 Hertfordshire

25 Hatfield 41,677 Hertfordshire

26 Fleet 38,726 Hampshire

27 Tonbridge 38,657 Kent

28 Canvey Island 38,170 Essex

29 Bishop's Stortford 37,838 Hertfordshire

30 Leighton Buzzard 37,469 Bedfordshire

31 Billericay 36,338 Essex

32 Hitchin 36,099 Hertfordshire

33 Windsor/Eton 33,348 Berkshire

34 Harpenden 30,240 Hertfordshire

35 Sevenoaks 29,506 Kent

36 Stanford Le Hope/Corringham 28,725 Essex

37 Ditton 25,982 Kent

38 Godalming 22,689 Surrey

39 Potters Bar 22,639 Hertfordshire

40 New Addington 22,280 Greater London

41 Berkhamsted 21,997 Hertfordshire

42 Swanley 21,839 Kent

43 Gerrards Cross 20,633 Buckinghamshire

44 Crowborough 20,607 East Sussex



See also[edit]

Greater London
Greater London
Built-up Area Home counties List of metropolitan areas in the United Kingdom


^ "Greater South East needs strategic investment to secure future". London
Development Agency. 18 June 2007. Archived from the original on 25 May 2011.  ^ London
Assembly Archived 27 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine. – London
in its Regional Setting (PDF) ^ "Metropolitan Area Populations". Eurostat. 15 April 2015. Retrieved 8 July 2015.  ^ BBC News – The new commuter belt. 18 July 2006. ^ Travel to Work Areas (TTWAs) Archived 1 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine. Beginners' guide to UK geography, Office for National Statistics ^ State of the Cities Database Report on the Urban Competitiveness Theme for: – London
TTWA (LA)[permanent dead link] State of the Cities Database – Department for Communities and Local Government (Mid year population estimates on page 4 of the report) ^ http://www.urbanaudit.org/compare.aspx ^ http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/regional-analysis/urban-audit/urban-audit-ii/urban-audit---social-cohesion--london.xls ^ "British urban pattern: population data" (PDF). ESPON project 1.4.3 Study on Urban Functions. European Spatial Planning Observation Network. March 2007. p. 119. Archived from the original (pdf) on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 22 February 2010.  ^ "World Gazetteer: London
- largest cities (per geographical entity)". 9 February 2013. Archived from the original on 9 February 2013.  ^ a b "2011 Census – Built-up areas". ONS. Retrieved 29 June 2013. 

External links[edit]

Calculator for commuter travel times to London
from the Home Counties London
Travel to Work Area
Travel to Work Area
mapped with others A list of towns considered part of the commuter belt according to World Gazetteer at Archive.is
(archived 9 February 2013)

v t e

commuter belt

Home counties

Berkshire Buckinghamshire Essex Hertfordshire Kent Surrey

Urban areas

Greater London
Greater London
Built-up Area Reading/ Wokingham
Urban Area Southend Urban Area Farnborough/ Aldershot
Built-up Area Luton/ Dunstable
Urban Area High Wycombe
High Wycombe
Urban Area Medway
Towns Urban Area

Cities and towns (100k+)

Chelmsford Crawley Guildford High Wycombe London Luton Maidstone Reading Slough Southend-on-Sea

Towns (25k–99k)

Aldershot Ashford, Surrey Aylesbury Basildon Basingstoke Billericay Bishop's Stortford Borehamwood Bracknell Brentwood Burgess Hill Camberley Canvey Island Chatham Cheshunt Dartford Dunstable Epsom Ewell Earley Farnborough Farnham Fleet Gillingham Gravesend Grays Harlow Harpenden Hatfield Hemel Hempstead Horsham Hitchin Leighton Buzzard Letchworth Loughton Maidenhead Rayleigh Redhill Rochester Royal Tunbridge Wells Sittingbourne St Albans Stevenage Strood Sunbury-on-Thames Tonbridge Ware Watford Welwyn Garden City Wickford Windsor Woking Wokingham Woodley

Towns (10k–25k)

Addlestone Amersham Ashtead Baldock Beaconsfield Berkhamsted Broxbourne Buckhurst Hill Bushey Chertsey Chesham Chigwell Corringham Croxley Green Dorking East Grinstead East Malling Englefield Green Epping Frimley Frogmore Godalming Hadleigh Haywards Heath Hertford Hoddesdon Horley Houghton Regis Knaphill Marlow Potters Bar Reigate Rickmansworth Rochford Sandhurst Sevenoaks Snodland Shepperton South Benfleet Southborough, Kent Staines-upon-Thames Stanford-le-Hope Stanwell Swanley Thundersley Tilbury Tring Waltham Abbey Waltham Cross Yateley

v t e

World's twenty most populous metropolitan areas


1 Tokyo-Yokohama 2 Shanghai 3 Jakarta 4 Delhi 5 Seoul-Incheon

  6 Karachi   7 Guangzhou   8 Beijing   9 Shenzhen   7 Mexico

11 São Paulo 12 Lagos 13 Mumbai 14 Cairo 15 New York

16 Osaka 17 Moscow 18 Wuhan 19 Chengdu 20 Dhaka

Coordinates: 51°30′26″N 0°07′40″W / 51.5073°N 0.1277°W