Northumberland is a unitary authority area in
North East England, and the northernmost ceremonial county of England.
It borders Cumbria to the west, County Durham to the south, Tyne and
Wear to the southeast and the Scottish Borders council area to the
north. Its North Sea coastline is a designated Area of Outstanding
Natural Beauty with a 64-mile long distance path. The traditional county
town was Alnwick. Since 1981, the county council has been located in
Morpeth, in the east of the county.
The county of Northumberland included Newcastle upon Tyne until 1400, when the city became a county of itself. Northumberland expanded greatly in the Tudor period, annexing Berwick-upon-Tweed in 1482, Tynedale in 1495, Tynemouth in 1536, Redesdale around 1542 and Hexhamshire in 1572. Islandshire, Bedlingtonshire and Norhamshire – previously exclaves of County Durham collectively called North Durham – were incorporated into Northumberland in 1844. Tynemouth and other settlements in North Tyneside were transferred to Tyne and Wear in 1974 under the Local Government Act 1972.
Being on the border of England and Scotland, Northumberland has been the site of a number of battles. The county is noted for its undeveloped landscape of high moorland, a favourite with landscape painters, and now largely protected as a National Park. Northumberland is the most sparsely populated county in England, with only 62 people per square kilometre.
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This webpage was last updated Friday, 07-Nov-2014 17:35:53 MST