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MERSEYSIDE (/ˈmɜːrzisaɪd/ ) is a metropolitan county in North West England
England
, with a population of 1.38 million . It encompasses the metropolitan area centred on both banks of the lower reaches of the Mersey Estuary
Mersey Estuary
, and comprises five metropolitan boroughs : Knowsley , St. Helens , Sefton , Wirral , and the city of Liverpool
Liverpool
. Merseyside, which was created on 1 April 1974 as a result of the Local Government Act 1972 , takes its name from the River Mersey
River Mersey
.

Merseyside
Merseyside
spans 249 square miles (645 km2) of land which border Lancashire
Lancashire
(to the north-east), Greater Manchester
Greater Manchester
(to the east), Cheshire
Cheshire
(to the south and south-east) and the Irish Sea
Irish Sea
to the west. North Wales is across the Dee Estuary
Dee Estuary
. There is a mix of high density urban areas, suburbs, semi-rural and rural locations in Merseyside, but overwhelmingly the land use is urban. It has a focused central business district, formed by Liverpool
Liverpool
City Centre , but Merseyside
Merseyside
is also a polycentric county with five metropolitan districts, each of which has at least one major town centre and outlying suburbs. The Liverpool
Liverpool
Urban Area is the fifth most populous conurbation in England , and dominates the geographic centre of the county, while the smaller Birkenhead Urban Area dominates the Wirral Peninsula in the south.

For the 12 years following 1974 the county had a two-tier system of local government; district councils shared power with the Merseyside County Council . The county council was abolished in 1986, and so its districts (the metropolitan boroughs) are now effectively unitary authority areas . However, the metropolitan county continues to exist in law and as a geographic frame of reference, and several county-wide services are co-ordinated by authorities and joint-boards, such as Merseytravel (for public transport), Merseyside
Merseyside
Fire and Rescue Service and the Merseyside Police
Merseyside Police
(for law-enforcement); as a ceremonial county , Merseyside
Merseyside
has a Lord Lieutenant and a High Sheriff . The boroughs of Merseyside
Merseyside
are joined by the neighbouring borough of Halton in Cheshire
Cheshire
to form the Liverpool
Liverpool
City Region , which is a local enterprise partnership and combined authority area.

Merseyside
Merseyside
is an amalgamation of 22 former local government districts from the former administrative counties of Lancashire
Lancashire
, Cheshire
Cheshire
and six autonomous county boroughs centred on Birkenhead
Birkenhead
, Bootle , Liverpool, Southport
Southport
, St. Helens , and Wallasey .

CONTENTS

* 1 History * 2 Geography * 3 Identity

* 4 Local government

* 4.1 Metropolitan boroughs * 4.2 County level functions * 4.3 Liverpool
Liverpool
City Region

* 5 Economy * 6 Greater Merseyside
Merseyside

* 7 Places of interest

* 7.1 Liverpool
Liverpool
* 7.2 Knowsley * 7.3 St Helens * 7.4 Sefton * 7.5 Wirral

* 8 See also * 9 Notes * 10 References * 11 Further reading * 12 External links

HISTORY

Port of Liverpool
Liverpool
docks, at Seaforth . Merseyside
Merseyside
lies at the Mersey Estuary
Mersey Estuary
.

Merseyside
Merseyside
was designated as a " Special
Special
Review" area in the Local Government Act 1958 , and the Local Government Commission for England started a review of this area in 1962, based around the core county boroughs of Liverpool
Liverpool
/ Bootle / Birkenhead
Birkenhead
/ Wallasey . Further areas, including Widnes
Widnes
and Runcorn , were added to the Special
Special
Review Area by Order in 1965. Draft proposals were published in 1965, but the commission never completed its final proposals as it was abolished in 1966.

Instead, a Royal Commission was set up to review English local government entirely, and its report (known as the Redcliffe-Maud Report ) proposed a much wider Merseyside
Merseyside
metropolitan area covering southwest Lancashire
Lancashire
and northwest Cheshire, extending as far south as Chester
Chester
and as far north as the River Ribble . This would have included four districts: Southport
Southport
/Crosby , Liverpool
Liverpool
/ Bootle , St. Helens / Widnes
Widnes
and Wirral / Chester
Chester
. In 1970 the Merseyside
Merseyside
Passenger Transport Executive (which operates today under the Merseytravel brand) was set up, covering Liverpool, Sefton, Wirral and Knowsley, but excluding Southport
Southport
and St. Helens.

The Redcliffe-Maud Report was rejected by the incoming Conservative Party government, but the concept of a two-tier metropolitan area based on the Mersey area was retained. A White Paper was published in 1971. The Local Government Bill presented to Parliament involved a substantial trimming from the White Paper, excluding the northern and southern fringes of the area, excluding Chester, Ellesmere Port (and, unusually, including Southport, whose council had requested to be included). Further alterations took place in Parliament, with Skelmersdale being removed from the area, and a proposed district including St Helens and Huyton
Huyton
being subdivided into what are now the metropolitan boroughs of St. Helens and Knowsley .

Merseyside
Merseyside
was created on 1 April 1974 from areas previously parts of the administrative counties of Lancashire
Lancashire
and Cheshire
Cheshire
, along with the county boroughs of Birkenhead, Wallasey, Liverpool, Bootle, and St Helens. Following the creation of Merseyside, Merseytravel expanded to take in St Helens and Southport.

POST-1974 PRE-1974

METROPOLITAN COUNTY METROPOLITAN BOROUGH COUNTY BOROUGHS NON-COUNTY BOROUGHS URBAN DISTRICTS RURAL DISTRICTS

Merseyside
Merseyside
is an amalgamation of 22 former local government districts, including six county boroughs and two municipal boroughs. Knowsley

Huyton
Huyton
with Roby • Kirkby Prescot • West Lancashire
Lancashire
• Whiston •

Liverpool
Liverpool
Liverpool

Sefton Bootle Southport
Southport
• Crosby • Formby
Formby
• Litherland • West Lancashire
Lancashire

St. Helens St. Helens

Ashton-in-Makerfield
Ashton-in-Makerfield
Billinge and Winstanley • Haydock • Rainford • Whiston •

Wirral Birkenhead
Birkenhead
Wallasey Bebington Hoylake • Wirral •

Between 1974 and 1986 the county had a two-tier system of local government with the five boroughs sharing power with the Merseyside County Council . However, in 1986 the government of Margaret Thatcher abolished the county council along with all other metropolitan county councils, and so its boroughs are now effectively unitary authorities .

GEOGRAPHY

An aerial photograph of Merseyside
Merseyside
See also: List of places in Merseyside
Merseyside
, List of settlements in Merseyside by population , and Liverpool
Liverpool
Urban Area

Merseyside
Merseyside
is divided into two parts by the Mersey Estuary, the Wirral is located on the west side of the estuary, upon the Wirral Peninsula and the rest of the county is located on the east side of the estuary. The eastern part of Merseyside
Merseyside
borders onto Lancashire
Lancashire
to the north, Greater Manchester
Greater Manchester
to the east, with both parts of the county bordering Cheshire
Cheshire
to the south. The territory comprising the county of Merseyside
Merseyside
previously formed part of the administrative counties of Lancashire
Lancashire
(east of the River Mersey) and Cheshire
Cheshire
(west of the River Mersey).

The two parts are linked by the two Mersey Tunnels , the Wirral Line of Merseyrail
Merseyrail
, and the Mersey Ferry
Mersey Ferry
.

IDENTITY

To express location within the Merseyside
Merseyside
area by the preposition on – thus "on Merseyside" as opposed to "in Merseyside" – was traditionally the more usual. However, the logic of suggestions in support of this from some quarters (that, after all, one would always be "on" the side of the Mersey, not "in" it) falls down; since it is, in fact, entirely possible to be situated "in" or "on" “side” of the River Mersey
River Mersey
and area(s) thus designated. Therefore, more recent usage tends to draw distinctions between the geographical "Merseyside" – for which "on" is considered appropriate – and the Metropolitan county of "Merseyside", for which "in" is used.

Ipsos MORI polls in the boroughs of Sefton and Wirral in the 2000s showed that in general, residents of these boroughs identified slightly more strongly to Merseyside
Merseyside
than to Lancashire
Lancashire
or Cheshire respectively, but their affinity to Merseyside
Merseyside
was more likely to be "fairly strong" than "very strong".

LOCAL GOVERNMENT

Coat of arms of the Merseyside County Council .

METROPOLITAN BOROUGHS

Merseyside
Merseyside
contains the metropolitan boroughs of Liverpool
Liverpool
, Knowsley , Sefton , St. Helens and Wirral .

COUNTY LEVEL FUNCTIONS

Despite the abolition of the county council some local services are still run on a county-wide basis, now administered by joint-boards of the five metropolitan boroughs; these include the:

* Merseyside Police
Merseyside Police
* Merseyside
Merseyside
Fire text-align:left; vertical-align:top;">

LIVERPOOL

* Albert Dock
Albert Dock
* Anfield
Anfield
( Liverpool
Liverpool
F.C. Stadium) * The Beatles Story Museum Liverpool
Liverpool
at Albert Dock
Albert Dock
* The Cavern Club * Croxteth Hall
Croxteth Hall
* Gambier Terrace * Goodison Park
Goodison Park
( Everton F.C. Stadium) * HM Customs text-align:left; vertical-align:top;">

ST HELENS

* The Dream * Haydock Park Racecourse
Haydock Park Racecourse
* Langtree Park
Langtree Park
(St. Helens Stadium) in * North West Museum of Road Transport * St Helens World of Glass

SEFTON

* Aintree Racecourse * Crosby Beach * Formby
Formby
* Haig Avenue
Haig Avenue
* Hugh Baird College * Lord Street, Southport
Southport
* Meols Hall * Pleasureland Southport
Southport
* Royal Birkdale Golf Club * Southport
Southport
Pier

WIRRAL

* Bidston Hill
Bidston Hill
and Bidston Windmill * Birkenhead
Birkenhead
Park * Birkenhead
Birkenhead
Priory * Hamilton Square * Hilbre Island * Lady Lever Art Gallery
Lady Lever Art Gallery
* Leasowe Castle and Leasowe Lighthouse * North Wirral Coastal Park * Port Sunlight
Port Sunlight
* Prenton Park
Prenton Park
( Tranmere Rovers F.C.
Tranmere Rovers F.C.
Stadium) * Royal Liverpool
Liverpool
Golf Club * Williamson Art Gallery and Museum * Wirral Country Park

SEE ALSO

* List of Lord Lieutenants of Merseyside
Merseyside
* List of High Sheriffs of Merseyside
Merseyside
* 1911 Liverpool
Liverpool
general transport strike * List of Sites of Special Scientific Interest in Merseyside

NOTES

* ^ Components may not sum to totals due to rounding * ^ includes hunting and forestry * ^ includes energy and construction * ^ includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured

REFERENCES

* ^ "2009 Mid Year Estimates – Table 9 ONS". statistics.gov.uk. Archived from the original on 16 December 2008. Retrieved 9 September 2010.

* ^ Office for National Statistics
Office for National Statistics
. "Gazetteer of the old and new geographies of the United Kingdom" (PDF). statistics.gov.uk. p. 48. Retrieved on 6 March 2008. • Office for National Statistics
Office for National Statistics
(17 September 2004). "Beginners\' Guide to UK Geography: Metropolitan Counties and Districts". statistics.gov.uk. Archived from the original on 15 March 2008. Retrieved on 6 March 2008. •"North West – Electoral Commission". The Electoral Commission. Retrieved on 7 July 2008. * ^ Sefton poll, where 51% residents belonged strongly to Merseyside, and compared with 35% to Lancashire; Wirral poll, where 45% of residents belonged strongly to Merseyside; compared with 30% to Cheshire. In both boroughs, "very strongly" ratings for the historic county were larger than that for Merseyside, but "fairly strongly" was lower. * ^ " Liverpool
Liverpool
city region metro mayor: what is it, when will we get one and who will it be?". Liverpool
Liverpool
Echo. 18 May 2016. Retrieved 16 July 2016. * ^ Merseyside
Merseyside
Street Atlas. Geographers' A-Z Map Co Ltd. ISBN 978-0850399653 . * ^ "North West (England)". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 28 November 2015. * ^ "Art Galleries - Museum - Glass Blowing- Victorian Furnace". The World of Glass. Retrieved 28 November 2015.

FURTHER READING

* Dickinson, Joseph (1851). The Flora of Liverpool. Liverpool: Deighton and Laughton.

EXTERNAL LINKS

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