The term "London" is normally used in reference to Greater London or to the overall conurbation, but not often to the ancient, tiny City of London. Instead, this small area is often referred to simply as "the City" or "the Square Mile" and it forms the main financial district. Archaically the urbanised area of London was known as the Metropolis. In common usage, the terms 'London' and 'Greater London' are usually used interchangeably. It is officially divided for some purposes, with varying definitions, into Inner London and Outer London. For strategic planning purposes the region is divided into five sub regions.
London is the only English region with directly elected local governance. The Greater London Authority (GLA) comprises a regional assembly called the London Assembly and an executive head known as the Mayor of London. The current Mayor of London (not to be confused with the Lord Mayor of the City of London) is Boris Johnson. He is scrutinised by an elected London Assembly, which may amend his annual budget (by two-thirds majority) but otherwise lacks the power to block his directives. The headquarters of the GLA is at City Hall in Southwark. The Mayor is responsible for Greater London's strategic planning and is required to produce a London Plan document.
|Country||City||County / District / Region / State||Date|
|Russia||Moscow||Central Federal District|
|United States||New York City||New York||2001|
For Borough twinning see List of London Borough twinnings.
The region covers an area of 1,579 square kilometres. The population density is 4,761 people per square kilometre, more than ten times that of any other British region. In terms of population, London is the 25th largest city and the 17th largest metropolitan region in the world. It is also ranked 4th in the world in number of billionaires (United States Dollars) residing in the city. London ranks as one of the most expensive cities in the world, alongside Tokyo and Moscow.
In January 2005, a survey of London's ethnic and religious diversity claimed that there were more than 300 languages spoken and more than 50 non-indigenous communities which have a population of more than 10,000 in London. Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that, as of 2006, London's foreign-born population is 2,288,000 (31%), up from 1,630,000 in 1997. The 2001 census showed that 27.1% of Greater London's population were born outside the UK, and a slightly higher proportion were classed as non-white.
The table below shows the 'Country of Birth' of London residents in 2001, the date of the last UK Census. (Top 21). Note that a portion of the German-born population are likely to be British nationals born to parents serving in the British armed forces in Germany. Note also that these figures do not give a fair indication of the total population of the specific ethnic groups associated with each country. For example Londoners of Greek origin (from both Greece and Cyprus) who reside in Greater London number 300,000, since an organised Greek community has been established for nearly two centuries. The same can be said for Italian and French Londoners whose communities have been here for centuries. Another type of community are i.e. Poles who are in London since the late Middle Ages, but it was in the 21st century that the community grew significantly (approximate number is 350,000 in 2008).
Country of Birth Population (2001)United Kingdom 5,230,155
London has been a focus for immigration for centuries, whether as a place of safety or for economic reasons. Huguenots, eastern European Jews and Cypriots are examples of the former; Irish, Bangladeshis and West Indians came for new lives. The East End district around Spitalfields has been first home for several ethnic groups, which have subsequently moved elsewhere in London as they gained prosperity. The largest ethnic communities are the Jamiacan in Brixton, West-African in Southwark, Pakistani and Bangladeshi in Newham, Tamil in Wembley and East African and Caribbean in Harlesden and Gospel Oak.
The largest religious groupings in London are Christian (58.2%), No Religion (15.8%), Muslim (8.2%), Hindu (4.1%), Jewish (2.1%), and Sikh (1.5%). London has traditionally been Christian, and has a large number of churches, particularly in the City. The famous St Paul's Cathedral in the City and Southwark Cathedral south of the river are Anglican administrative centres, while the head of the Church of England and worldwide Anglican Communion, the Archbishop of Canterbury has his main residence at Lambeth Palace in the London Borough of Lambeth. Important national and royal ceremonies are shared between St Paul's and Westminster Abbey. The Abbey is not to be confused with nearby Westminster Cathedral, the largest Roman Catholic cathedral in England and Wales. Religious practice is lower than any other part of the UK or Western Europe and is around seven times lower than American averages. Despite the prevalence of Anglican churches, weekly observance is low within the Anglican denomination, although in recent years church attendance, particularly at evangelical Anglican churches in London, has started to increase.
London is also home to sizeable Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, and Jewish communities. Many Muslims live in Tower Hamlets and Newham; the most important Muslim buildings are the East London Mosque in Whitchapel and the London Central Mosque on the edge of Regent's Park. London's large Hindu community is found in the north-western boroughs of Harrow and Brent, the latter of which contains one of Europe's largest Hindu temples, Neasden Temple. Sikh communities are located in East and West London, which is also home to the largest Sikh Temples in the world, outside India. The majority of British Jews live in London, with significant Jewish communities in Stamford Hill (the most Orthodox Jewish area outside New York City and Israel) and St. John's Wood, Golders Green, and Edgware in North London.
For elections to the London Assembly, London is divided into fourteen constituencies. The constituencies are formed from the area of two or three boroughs combined. The City of London forms part of the City and East constituency.
London is divided into 74 Parliamentary constituencies, which are all small borough constituencies. They are formed from the combined area of several wards from one or more London Boroughs. Typically a single borough is covered by two or three constituencies. Their number will be reduced to 73 before the next general election.
The population on the current territory of Greater London rose from about 1.1 million in 1801 (back then only about 0.85 million people were in the urban area of London, while 0.25 million were living in villages and towns not yet part of London) to an estimated 8.6 million in 1939, but declined to 6.7 million in 1988, before starting to rebound in the end of the 1980s. As of 2006, the population in Greater London has only recovered the level of 1970 (which was also the level of population in the 1920s). Some researchers expect the population of Greater London to reach 8.15 million by 2016, which would still be 0.45 million short of the 1939 peak.
Figures here are for Greater London in its 2001 limits. Figures before 1971 have been reconstructed by the Office for National Statistics based on past censuses in order to fit the 2001 limits. Figures from 1981 onward are midyear estimates (revised as of August 2007), which are more accurate than the censuses themselves, known to underestimate the population of London.
|1901||March 31/April 1||6,506,954|
|1965||Greater London formally created|
This is a chart of trend of regional gross value added (GVA) of Inner London at current basic prices published (pp.240-253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of British Pounds Sterling.
|Year||Regional Gross Value Added||Agriculture||Industry||Services|
This is a chart of trend of regional gross value added of Outer London at current basic prices published (pp.240-253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of British Pounds Sterling.
|Year||Regional Gross Value Added||Agriculture||Industry||Services|
The area of Greater London has not changed significantly since its creation. There have been a considerable number of small boundary changes. The most significant of these were the 1969 transfers of Knockholt to Kent and Farleigh to Surrey and a series of minor adjustments during the 1990s which realigned the boundary to the M25 motorway in some places.
Greater London is not exactly coterminous with London's built up area and a somewhat wider Greater London Urban Area has been defined and is used for mainly statistical purposes. London's wider metropolitan area is known as the London commuter belt and is delimited by a variety of definitions.
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