City of Westminster

Last updated

Westminster
The Palace of Westminster.JPG
Seen from the south bank of the Thames in August 2013
City of westminster logo.svg
Council logo
City of Westminster in Greater London.svg
Westminster shown within Greater London
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country England
Region London
Ceremonial county Greater London
Created1 April 1965
Admin HQCity Hall, Victoria Street
Government
  Type London borough council
  Body Westminster City Council
  LeadershipLeader & Cabinet (Conservative)
   Lord Mayor Ruth Bush
  London Assembly Tony Devenish (Con) AM for West Central
   MPs Karen Buck (Lab), Mark Field (Con)
  EU Parliament London
Area
  Total8.29 sq mi (21.48 km2)
Area rank309th (of 317)
Population
 (mid-2018 est.)
  Total255,324
  Rank66th (of 317)
  Density31,000/sq mi (12,000/km2)
  Ethnicity [1]
35.2% White British
2.3% White Irish
0% White Gypsy or Irish Traveller
24.1% Other White
0.9% White & Black Caribbean
0.9% White & Black African
1.6% White & Asian
1.8% Other Mixed
3.3% Indian
1.1% Pakistani
2.9% Bangladeshi
2.7% Chinese
4.6% Other Asian
4.2% Black African
2% Black Caribbean
1.3% Other Black
7.2% Arab
3.9% Other
Time zone UTC (GMT)
  Summer (DST) UTC+1 (BST)
Postcodes
EC, NW, SW, W, WC
Area code(s) 020
ONS code 00BK
GSS code E09000033
Police Metropolitan Police
Website https://www.westminster.gov.uk/

The City of Westminster is an Inner London borough that also holds city status. It occupies much of the central area of Greater London including most of the West End. Historically in Middlesex, it is to the west of the ancient City of London, directly to the east of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, and its southern boundary is the River Thames. The London borough was created with the 1965 establishment of Greater London. Upon its creation, it inherited the city status previously held by the smaller Metropolitan Borough of Westminster from 1900, which was first awarded to Westminster in 1540.

Inner London Place in England

Inner London is the name for the group of London boroughs which form the interior part of Greater London and are surrounded by Outer London. With its origins in the Bills of mortality, it became fixed as an area for statistics in 1847 and was used as an area of local government from 1855 to 1965 principally as the County of London or earlier as the Metropolitan Board of Works Area (metropolis). It now has two common definitions. The first is the statutory definition delineated in the London Government Act 1963, coming into force on 1 April 1965, comprising twelve Inner London boroughs and almost identical to the County of London that was abolished at the same time. The second is the current definition used by the Office for National Statistics comprising eleven of the statutory Inner London boroughs and two of the statutory Outer London boroughs, and the City of London.

City status in the United Kingdom Honorary status granted by royal charter to settlements in the United Kingdom

City status in the United Kingdom is granted by the monarch of the United Kingdom to a select group of communities: as of 2014, there are 69 cities in the United Kingdom – 51 in England, six in Wales, seven in Scotland and five in Northern Ireland. The holding of city status gives a settlement no special rights. This appellation carries its own prestige and competition for the status is hard-fought.

Greater London County of England

Greater London is a ceremonial county of England that forms the London region. This region forms the administrative boundaries of London and is organised into 33 local government districts—the 32 London boroughs and the City of London, which is located within the region but is separate from the county. The Greater London Authority, based in Southwark, is responsible for strategic local government across the region and consists of the Mayor of London and the London Assembly. The City of London Corporation is the principal local authority for the City of London, with a similar role to that of the 32 London borough councils.

Contents

Aside from numerous large parks and open spaces, the population density of the district is high. Many sites commonly associated with London are in the borough, including St James's Palace, Buckingham Palace, the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament) and 10 Downing Street. The borough is divided into a number of localities including the ancient political district of Westminster; the shopping areas around Oxford Street, Regent Street, Piccadilly and Bond Street; and the night-time entertainment district of Soho. Much of the borough is residential, and in 2008 it was estimated to have a population of 236,000. The local government body is Westminster City Council.

Population density A measurement of population numbers per unit area or volume

Population density is a measurement of population per unit area, or exceptionally unit volume; it is a quantity of type number density. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and most of the time to humans. It is a key geographical term. In simple terms population density refers to the number of people living in an area per kilometer square.

St Jamess Palace Royal palace in the United Kingdom

St James's Palace is the most senior royal palace in the United Kingdom. Located in the City of Westminster, although no longer the principal residence of the monarch, it is the ceremonial meeting place of the Accession Council and the London residence of several minor members of the royal family.

Buckingham Palace Official London residence and principal workplace of the British monarch

Buckingham Palace is the London residence and administrative headquarters of the monarch of the United Kingdom. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is often at the centre of state occasions and royal hospitality. It has been a focal point for the British people at times of national rejoicing and mourning.

A study in 2017 by Trust for London and The New Policy Institute found that Westminster has the third-highest pay inequality of the 32 London boroughs. It also has the second-least affordable private rent for low earners in London, behind only Kensington and Chelsea. The borough performs more positively on education, with 82% of adults and 69% of 19-year-olds having Level 3 qualifications. [2]

Coat of arms

City of Westminster arms at Westminster City Hall.JPG
Coat of arms of the City of Westminster at Westminster City Hall
Old Bond Street (5821104648).jpg
Historic coat of arms of Westminster, in Old Bond Street

The current Westminster coat of arms were given to the city by an official grant on 2 September 1964. [3]

Westminster had other arms before, which had a chief identical to the chief in the present arms. The symbols in the lower two thirds of the shield stand for former municipalities now merged with the city, Paddington and St. Marylebone. The original arms had a portcullis as the main charge, which now forms the crest. [3]

Chief (heraldry) ordinary in heraldic blazon; horizontal band at the top of a coat of arms

In heraldic blazon, a chief is a charge on a coat of arms that takes the form of a band running horizontally across the top edge of the shield. Writers disagree in how much of the shield's surface is to be covered by the chief, ranging from one-fourth to one-third. The former is more likely if the chief is uncharged, that is, if it does not have other objects placed on it. If charged, the chief is typically wider to allow room for the objects drawn there.

Portcullis heavy vertically-opening gate typically found in medieval fortifications

A portcullis is a heavy vertically-closing gate typically found in medieval fortifications, consisting of a latticed grille made of wood, metal, or a combination of the two, which slides down grooves inset within each jamb of the gateway.

Crest (heraldry) top component of an heraldic display

A crest is a component of a heraldic display, consisting of the device borne on top of the helm. Originating in the decorative sculptures worn by knights in tournaments and, to a lesser extent, battles, crests became solely pictorial after the 16th century.

History

The origins of the City of Westminster pre-date the Norman Conquest of England. In the mid-11th century, King Edward the Confessor began the construction of an abbey at Westminster, only the foundations of which survive today. Between the abbey and the river he built a palace, thereby guaranteeing that the seat of Government would be fixed at Westminster, and inevitably drawing power and wealth west out of the old City of London. [4]

Edward the Confessor King of England

Edward the Confessor, also known as Saint Edward the Confessor, was among the last Anglo-Saxon kings of England. Usually considered the last king of the House of Wessex, he ruled from 1042 to 1066.

For centuries Westminster and the City of London were geographically quite distinct. It was not until the sixteenth century that houses began to be built over the adjoining fields, eventually absorbing nearby villages such as Marylebone and Kensington, and gradually creating the vast Greater London that exists today.

Henry VIII's dissolution of the monasteries abolished the abbey at Westminster, although the former abbey church is still called Westminster Abbey. The church was briefly the cathedral of the Diocese of Westminster created from part of the Diocese of London in 1540, by letters patent which also granted city status to Westminster, a status retained after the diocese was abolished in 1550. [5] The Westminster Court of Burgesses was formed in 1585 to govern the Westminster area, previously under the Abbey's control. The City and Liberties of Westminster were further defined by Letters Patent in 1604, and the court of burgesses and liberty continued in existence until 1900, and the creation of the Metropolitan Borough of Westminster. [6] [7]

The present-day City of Westminster as an administrative entity with its present boundaries dates from 1965, when the City of Westminster was created from the former area of three metropolitan boroughs: St Marylebone, Paddington, and the smaller Metropolitan Borough of Westminster, which included Soho, Mayfair, St. James's, Strand, Westminster, Pimlico, Belgravia, and Hyde Park. This restructuring took place under the London Government Act 1963, which significantly reduced the number of local government districts in London, resulting in local authorities responsible for larger geographical areas and greater populations.

The Westminster Metropolitan Borough was itself the result of an administrative amalgamation which took place in 1900. Sir John Hunt O.B.E was the First Town Clerk of the City of Westminster, 1900–1928.

Prior to 1900, the area occupied by what would become the Metropolitan Borough of Westminster had been administered by five separate local bodies: the Vestry of St George Hanover Square, the Vestry of St Martin in the Fields, Strand District Board of Works, Westminster District Board of Works and the Vestry of Westminster St James.

The boundaries of the City of Westminster today, as well as those of the other London boroughs, have remained more or less unchanged since the Act of 1963.

Demographics

Population
YearPop.±%
1801 220,188    
1811 245,254+11.4%
1821 288,851+17.8%
1831 344,200+19.2%
1841 368,910+7.2%
1851 422,850+14.6%
1861 446,263+5.5%
1871 469,677+5.2%
1881 493,090+5.0%
1891 462,837−6.1%
1901 441,857−4.5%
1911 421,865−4.5%
1921 396,406−6.0%
1931 372,566−6.0%
1941 334,448−10.2%
1951 300,461−10.2%
1961 267,126−11.1%
1971 237,614−11.0%
1981 163,893−31.0%
1991 187,526+14.4%
2001 181,279−3.3%
2011 219,396+21.0%
Source: A Vision of Britain through time, citing Census population

Ethnicity

The following table shows the ethnic group of respondents in the 2001 and 2011 census in Westminster.

Ethnic Group2001 [8] 2011 [9]
Number%Number%
White: British87,93848.51%77,33435.25%
White: Irish6,5743.63%4,9602.26%
White: Gypsy or Irish Traveller760.03%
White: Other38,20321.07%52,96024.14%
White: Total132,71573.12%135,33061.68%
Asian or Asian British: Indian5,6653.12%7,2133.29%
Asian or Asian British: Pakistani1,8281.01%2,3281.06%
Asian or Asian British: Bangladeshi5,0002.76%6,2992.87%
Asian or Asian British: Chinese4,0772.25%5,9172.70%
Asian or Asian British: Other Asian3,6141.99%10,1054.61%
Asian or Asian British: Total20,18411.13%31,86214.52%
Black or Black British: Caribbean5,6133.10%4,4492.03%
Black or Black British: African6,6783.68%9,1414.17%
Black or Black British: Other Black1,1900.66%2,8821.31%
Black or Black British: Total13,4817.44%16,4727.51%
Mixed: White and Black Caribbean1,3820.76%1,8690.85%
Mixed: White and Black African1,2040.66%1,9270.89%
Mixed: White and Asian2,4361.34%3,5841.63%
Mixed: Other Mixed2,4581.36%4,0151.83%
Mixed: Total7,4804.13%11,3955.19%
Other: Arab15,7247.17%
Other: Any other ethnic group8,6133.93%
Other: Total7,4264.10%24,33711.09%
Black, Asian, and minority ethnic: Total48,57126.79%84,06638.32%
Total181,286100.00%219,396100.00%

Religion

Religion2001 [10] 2011 [11]
Number%Number%
Christian99,79755.05%97,87744.61%
No religion29,30016.16%44,54220.30%
Muslim21,34611.77%40,07318.27%
Religion not stated15,8778.76%20,5199.35%
Jewish7,7324.27%7,2373.30%
Hindu3,4971.93%4,1781.90%
Buddhist2,3921.32%3,1941.46%
Other religion9450.52%1,2800.58%
Sikh4000.22%4960.23%
Total181,286100.00%219,396100.00%

Governance

Local government

A map showing the wards of Westminster since 2002 Westminster London UK labelled ward map 2002.svg
A map showing the wards of Westminster since 2002

The city is divided into 20 wards, each electing three councillors. Westminster City Council is currently composed of 41 Conservative Party members and 19 Labour Party members. [12]

A Lord Mayor is elected annually to serve as the official representative of the city for one year. See List of Lord Mayors of Westminster for a list of former Mayors (1900–1965) and Lord Mayors (1965 to date).

UK Parliament

Evolution of Parliamentary representation
191819501974198319972010
St Marylebone Westminster North Regent's Park and Kensington North Westminster North
Paddington North Paddington
Paddington South Cities of London and Westminster
Westminster St George's Cities of London and Westminster Cities of London and Westminster
Westminster Abbey
City of London

Districts

The City of Westminster covers all or part of the following areas of London:

Economy

The City of Westminster is home to a large number of companies. Many leading global corporations have chosen to establish their global or European headquarters in the City of Westminster. Mayfair and St. James's within the City of Westminster also have a large concentration of hedge fund and private equity funds. The West End is known as the Theatre District and is home to many of the leading performing arts businesses. Soho and its adjoining areas house a concentration of media and creative companies. Oxford Street is one of the leading shopping destinations in the world.[ citation needed ] The list of companies includes

BP head office in St. James's, City of Westminster BPheadoffice.JPG
BP head office in St. James's, City of Westminster
The Economist Building, St James's Street Economist building London4.jpg
The Economist Building, St James's Street

The Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, London is in Westminster. [19] [42]

Companies that previously had their head offices in the City of Westminster include Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI), British Aircraft Corporation, [19] [43] British Midland (Portland House), [44] British United Airways, [45] British Mediterranean Airways, [46] Cadbury, [47] Diageo, [48] BAA Limited, [19] [49] [50] Lloyd International Airways, [51] and P&O Princess Cruises. [52] In addition, Iran Air previously had its Piccadilly main sales office in the city. [53] [54]

Landmarks

Piccadilly Circus Open Happiness Piccadilly Circus Blue-Pink Hour 120917-1126-jikatu.jpg
Piccadilly Circus
Big Ben is the nickname for the Great Bell of the clock at the north end of the Palace of Westminster and is usually referred to both the clock and the clock tower (Elizabeth Tower) Clock Tower - Palace of Westminster, London - May 2007.jpg
Big Ben is the nickname for the Great Bell of the clock at the north end of the Palace of Westminster and is usually referred to both the clock and the clock tower (Elizabeth Tower)

The City of Westminster contains the some of the most famous sites in London, including Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament) and Big Ben.

Parks and open spaces

These include Green Park, Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, Regent's Park and St. James's Park. In addition to parks and open spaces within the borough, the City owns and maintains East Finchley Cemetery and crematorium in the London Borough of Barnet.

Transport

Marylebone station Marylebone station 01.jpg
Marylebone station

National Rail stations

Four National Rail stations serve the City of Westminster:

Railway stations in the City of Westminster [55]
StationImageLineDestinations
London Charing Cross
 National Rail logo.svg  Bakerloo line roundel (no text).svg  Northern line roundel (no text).svg 
Charing Cross station MMB 15 375808 465043 465008.jpg South Eastern Main Line South East London and Kent including London Bridge, Lewisham, Dartford, Orpington, Sevenoaks and Tunbridge Wells. Services operated by Southeastern. [56]
London Marylebone

National Rail logo.svg Bakerloo line roundel (no text).svg

MaryleboneStationAtNight.jpg Chiltern Main Line North West London, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Midlands including Wembley Stadium, Harrow, Aylesbury, Oxford and Birmingham Moor Street. Services operated by Chiltern Railways. [57]
London Paddington

National Rail logo.svg Bakerloo line roundel (no text).svg Circle line roundel (no text).svg District line roundel (no text).svg ( Elizabeth line roundel (no text).svg ) H&c line roundel (no text).svg

Trains at London Paddington station.jpg Great Western Main Line West London, South West England and South Wales including Ealing Broadway, Reading, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Oxford, Plymouth and Worcester. Services operated by Great Western Railway and TfL Rail ( Elizabeth line roundel (no text).svg ).

Heathrow Airport BSicon FLUG.svg

Services operated by Heathrow Express and TfL Rail ( Elizabeth line roundel (no text).svg ). [58] [59]

London Victoria

National Rail logo.svg Circle line roundel (no text).svg District line roundel (no text).svg Victoria line roundel (no text).svg

London-Victoria-station 03.JPG Brighton and Chatham Main LinesSouth East London and Kent including Peckham Rye, Dartford, Gravesend, Dover Priory and Ashford International. Services operated by Southeastern. [56]

South London, Sussex and the South Coast including Clapham Junction, Sutton, Brighton, Eastbourne, Gatwick Airport ( BSicon FLUG.svg ), Guildford, Portsmouth, and Southampton. Services operated by'Southern.

Gatwick Airport BSicon FLUG.svg

Services operated by Gatwick Express. [60]

London Underground

The City of Westminster is served by 27 London Underground stations and 10 lines.

Electric charging points

By 2009 Westminster City Council had electric vehicle charging points in 15 locations through the city (13 car parks and two on-street points). Users pay an annual fee to cover administration costs to register and use the points. [61] By 2018 there were 60 electric vehicle charging locations. [62]

Travel to work

In March 2011, the main forms of transport that residents used to travel to work were: underground, metro, light rail, tram, 21.0% of all residents aged 16–74; on foot, 9.3%; bus, minibus or coach, 9.3%; driving a car or van, 6.0%; work mainly at or from home, 5.5%; bicycle, 3.1%; train, 3.0%. [63]

Education

The main entrance to the London School of Economics LSE main entrance.jpg
The main entrance to the London School of Economics

Westminster Children's Services administers many primary and secondary schools. In addition, there are several state-funded faith schools, primarily Church of England (CE), and Roman Catholic (RC), but Christian non-denominational (ND) schools are also in the borough, [64] and there are several non-profit-making junior and senior independent schools.

Universities and colleges

Public libraries

Charing Cross Library CharingCrossLibraryLondon.JPG
Charing Cross Library

The London Library, an independent lending library, is at 14 St. James Square. [65] [66]

The city operates two reference libraries; Westminster Reference Library and Marylebone Information Service. [67] Westminster Reference Library holds several special collections: of which the Sherlock Holmes, Arts and Business collections are the most comprehensive. [68] In addition to the collections in Westminster Reference Library the city has two specialist libraries: the Westminster Music Library, the largest music library in the UK [69] and the Westminster Chinese Library in the Charing Cross Library. [70]

Free City of Westminster operated public lending libraries in Westminster include:

Home ownership

In terms of tenure, the borough ranks highest on one standard criteria in analysing housing supply and demand, the proportion of private rented accommodation relative to other types of housing in England. This is indicative of a high density of development and higher investment demand relative to other districts in England and most of the 15 highest-ranking local authorities are boroughs of Greater London. Tourism also increases the proportion of willing third-party landlords, as the two authorities which are outside London in the list are England's largest south coast holiday resorts.

Highest-ranked local authorities by proportion of Social Housing (2011 Census) [81]
Local AuthorityPrivately rentedSocially rentedShared ownership
City of Westminster London Borough37.611.90.8
Kensington and Chelsea London Borough349.20.9
City of London London Borough33.110.40.3
Newham London Borough32.618.31.8
Tower Hamlets London Borough30.817.32.4
Camden London Borough30.5230.7
Haringey London Borough30.3171.5
Hammersmith and Fulham London Borough3015.71.6
Wandsworth London Borough3012.81.5
Brent London Borough28.89.71.5
Bournemouth Unitary Authority28.25.90.7
Brighton and Hove Unitary Authority289.80.9
Lambeth London Borough27.719.61.5
Hackney London Borough27.623.82.3

Notable people

Freedom of the City

The following people and military units have received the Freedom of the City of Westminster.

Individuals

Military Units


See also

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References

Notes

  1. 2011 Census: Ethnic group, local authorities in England and Wales , Office for National Statistics (2012). See Classification of ethnicity in the United Kingdom for the full descriptions used in the 2011 Census.
  2. "London's Poverty Profile". Trust for London. Retrieved 19 June 2018.
  3. 1 2 "Westminster (London)". Heraldry of the world. Retrieved 25 October 2015.
  4. Gray, p. 68
  5. Coke, Edward; Hale, Matthew; Nottingham, Heneage Finch, Earl of; Francis Hargrave, Charles Butler (1853). "109b, Note (3) [124]". A commentary upon Littleton. The Institutes of the laws of England. 1 (1st American, from 19th London ed.). Philadelphia: R. H. Small. Vol. 1 p.164. Retrieved 17 May 2010.; "December 1540; Grants, No.30". Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, Henry VIII. British History Online. Volume 16: 1540–1541. London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office. 1898. pp. 174–175. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  6. Description of the City and Liberties of Westminster in 1819
  7. Lewis, Samuel, Topgraphical Dictionary of England, Vol. III, London, 1831
  8. "KS006 - Ethnic group". NOMIS. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  9. "Ethnic Group by measures". NOMIS. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  10. "KS007 - Religion" . Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  11. "2011 census – theme tables" . Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  12. Councillors by political party at westminster.gov.uk
  13. "Company Info." BAE Systems. Retrieved on 31 August 2011. "Registered office 6 Carlton Gardens, London, SW1Y 5AD, United Kingdom"
  14. " London > BAE Systems plc." BAE Systems. Retrieved on 31 August 2011. "BAE Systems plc Address London – Stirling Square Carlton Gardens London SW1Y 5AD United Kingdom "
  15. "Head Office." BAE Systems. Retrieved on 31 August 2011. "As you might expect, our London Head Office is the base for our Executive Board and for other senior group managers in strategic roles." and "Head Office is located in Central London but also has a number of support functions and functional specialists based in Farnborough, Hampshire."
  16. "."Anglo American Plc. Retrieved on 1 January 2017. "Registered office 20 Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5AN."
  17. "Terms and Conditions." BBC. Retrieved on 6 January 2010. "British Broadcasting Corporation Broadcasting House, Portland Place, London, W1A 1AA."
  18. "Contact BP in the United Kingdom Archived 25 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine ." BP. Retrieved on 18 August 2009.
  19. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "Maps." City of Westminster. Retrieved on 21 March 2016.
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Coordinates: 51°30′44″N00°09′48″W / 51.51222°N 0.16333°W / 51.51222; -0.16333