What Are the 10 Largest Towns in England?

As of 2015, the 10 largest town in England start with Reading, Berkshire; Dudley, West Midlands; Northampton, Northamptonshire; Luton, Bedfordshire; and Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire. The top 10 finishes with Walsall, West Midlands; Basildon, Essex; Bournemouth, Dorset; Southend-on-Sea, Essex; and Swindon, Wiltshire.

The largest town in Britain, Reading, boasts nearly one-quarter of a million people located in southern central England. Although Romans most likely settled the town in 871 A.D., it didn’t attain official town status until around 1086 A.D. One of its main sites, Reading Abbey, was founded in 1121. The town thrived in the cloth trade followed by the iron works and manufacturing in the 1700s and 1800s. Although it is the largest town in the country, it hasn’t been officially granted city status despite its bids.

Dudley, situated in west central England, comes in at number two with 194,000 citizens. This town dates back to 11th century Dudley Castle during Anglo-Saxon times, which belonged to the Barony of Dudley. It grew due to the Industrial Revolution.

Northamptonshire, located in central England, started out as a Saxon village in the 800s and became a Danish stronghold until it was taken by England. The Earl of Northampton settled there after the crusades, building the Church of the Sepulchre. The town built its reputation on wool and then shoemaking, brewing and cattle.