Our Towns

The Centre For Towns work is focused primarily on 894 towns throughout Great Britain.

We will also be publishing data on villages, small communities and cities as it is important to compare data in each place type.
The Centre uses the following typology: 

Type Definition Number
Villages (less than 5,000) Places with less than 5,000 residents 5,568
Communities (5-10k) Places with between 5,000 and 10,000 residents 567
Small towns (10k-30k) Towns with between 10,000 and 30,000 residents 550
Medium towns (30k – 75k) Towns with between 30,000 and 75,000 residents 242
Large towns (over 75k) Towns with over 75,000 residents 102
Core Cities Core cities as defined by Pike et al (2016) 12

To see a list of the 894 towns throughout Great Britain included in our towns database click on either of these links;

To see the full list of 7,044 places of all sizes included in our comparative work click on either of these links;

The regional breakdown of our town types is as follows:

Region Small towns Medium towns Large towns
East Midlands 44 21 6
East of England 53 25 16
North East 28 11 7
North West 75 40 17
Scotland 68 23 3
South East 80 55 21
South West 63 14 9
Wales 49 10 2
West Midlands 28 29 10
Yorks & Humber 62 14 11

The Centre For Towns is aware that any classification of towns will inevitably be contested. There are no simple ways to define the geographical boundaries of a town, added to which even geographical boundaries are themselves contestable. Residents from towns are likely to have a variety of opinions as to where ‘their’ town begins and ends. The Centre For Towns has created its typology in good faith using objective criteria and will periodically review its places to ensure they broadly reflect the towns they intend to describe.

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