[den-bee-sheer, -sher]
Denbighshire, Welsh Sir Ddinbych, county, 326 sq mi (844 sq km), N Wales. In 1974, the old county of Denbighshire was divided between the nonmetropolitan counties of Clwyd and Gwynedd, but that portion that had been assigned to Clwyd was restored as the county of Denbighshire in 1996.
Denbighshire principal area
colspan="2" style="text-align: center; background: white;" - Geography
- Total
- % Water
Ranked 8th
844 km²
? %
Admin HQ Ruthin
ONS code 00NG
- Total ()
- Density

/ km²
Ethnicity 99.3% White.
Welsh language
- Any skills
Ranked 6th

Denbighshire County Council


MEPs Wales
Denbighshire (Sir Ddinbych) is a principal area and county in North Wales. It is named after the historic county of Denbighshire, but has substantially different borders. Denbighshire has the distinction of being the oldest inhabited part of Wales. Pontnewydd (Bontnewydd-Llanelwy) Paleaolithic site has remains of Neanderthals from 225,000 years ago.


The present principal area was formed on April 1, 1996, under the Local Government (Wales) Act 1994, from various parts of the county of Clwyd. It included the district of Rhuddlan (which was formed in 1974 entirely from Flintshire), the communities of Trefnant and Cefnmeiriadog from the district of Colwyn (which was entirely Denbighshire) and most of the Glyndŵr district. The part of the Glyndŵr district included the entirety of the former Edeyrnion Rural District, which was part of the administrative county of Merionethshire prior to 1974 - which covered the parishes of Betws Gwerfil Goch, Corwen, Gwyddelwern, Llangar, Llandrillo yn Edeirnion and Llansanffraid.

Other principal areas containing part of historic Denbighshire are Conwy, which picked up the remainder of the 1974-1996 Colwyn, and also the Denbighshire parts of the 1974-1996 Aberconwy, and Wrexham, which corresponds to the pre-1974 borough of Wrexham along with most of the Wrexham Rural District and also several parishes from Glyndŵr.

The post-1996 Powys includes the historic Denbighshire parishes of Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant, Llansilin and Llangedwyn, which had formed part of Glyndŵr district.


See List of places in Denbighshire for a list of towns and villages.

The area is mostly hilly moorland, with the Clwydian Range in the east, the Hiraethog Moors (Mynydd Hiraethog) in the west and the Berwyn range adjacent to the southern boundary. The broad, fertile Vale of Clwyd runs south to north in the centre, and there is a narrow coastal plain in the north. Average temperatures are 2°C in January and 19°C in July.


Top performing secondary schools in Denbighshire, (5 GCSEs, grades A-C, according to the latest inspection report by Estyn) :

76% St Brigids High School, Denbigh

68% Brynhyfryd High School, Ruthin (Bilingual)

63% Ysgol Uwchradd Glan Clwyd, St Asaph (Welsh)

54% Prestatyn High School, Prestatyn

50% Ysgol Dinas Bran, Llangollen

42% Denbigh High School, Denbigh

34% Blessed Edward Jones RC School, Rhyl

32% Rhyl High School, Rhyl

According to the latest inspection report by Estyn, St Brigids High School with a GCSE pass rate of 76% (based on 5 GCSEs, grades A*-C) is the 10th best performing secondary school in Wales.


Denbighshire's total population at the United Kingdom Census 2001 was 93,065, with the largest towns on the coast at Rhyl (pop. c.25,000) and Prestatyn (pop. c.15,000). The inland towns are much smaller, Denbigh having a population of 8,500, Ruthin 5,000, and Llangollen 3,300. 28% of the population speaks Welsh, mainly in the upland area and the Vale of Clwyd.


There are no heavy industrial sites in the county although most of the towns have small industrial parks or estates for light industry, the economy of the area being based on agriculture and tourism. A large proportion of the working population is employed in service industries in the service sector. The uplands support the rearing of sheep and beef cattle, while in the Vale of Clwyd dairy farming and the growing of wheat and barley crops predominates.

On November 19, 2004, Denbighshire was granted Fairtrade County status.

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