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Bradford

UK Place
Area
Total Area24.85 sq mi (64.4 km2)
Demography
Population293717 ()
Population density4560.8/km2 11819.6/sq mi
Administration
Metropolitan boroughCity of Bradford
Metropolitan countyWest Yorkshire
RegionYorkshire and the Humber
CountryEngland
Other Information
Post townBRADFORD
Postcode districtBD1-BD15 BD
Dialling code01274
UK ParliamentBradford North
Bradford West
Bradford South

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Bradford ( ) lies at the heart of the City of Bradford, a metropolitan borough of West Yorkshire, in Northern England. It is situated in the foothills of the Pennines, 8.6 mi (13.8 km) west of Leeds, and 16 mi (25.7 km) northwest of Wakefield. Bradford became a municipal borough in 1847, and received its charter as a city in 1897. Following local government reform in 1974, city status was bestowed upon the wider metropolitan borough.

Bradford has a population of 293,717, making it the fourteenth-most populous settlement in the UK. Bradford forms part of the West Yorkshire Urban Area conurbation which in 2001 had a population of 1.5 million and is part of the Leeds-Bradford Larger Urban Zone (LUZ), the third largest in the UK after London and Manchester, with an estimated population in the 2004 Urban Audit of 2.4 million.

Historically a part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, Bradford rose to prominence during the 19th century as an international centre of textile manufacture, particularly wool. It was a boomtown of the Industrial Revolution, and amongst the earliest industrialised settlements, rapidly becoming the "wool capital of the world". The area's access to a supply of coal, iron ore and soft water facilitated the growth of Bradford's manufacturing base, which, as textile manufacture grew, led to an explosion in population and was a stimulus to civic investment; Bradford has fine Victorian architecture including the grand Italianate City Hall.

The textile sector in Bradford fell into decline from the mid-20th century. Since this time, Bradford has emerged as a tourist destination with attractions such as the National Media Museum and Cartwright Hall. However, Bradford has faced similar challenges to the rest of the post-industrial area of Northern England, including deindustrialisation, housing problems, social unrest and economic deprivation. Bradford is cited as a prime example of 'parallel communities', where the population is effectively segregated along ethnic, cultural and faith lines.


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