Liverpool Built-up Area

Coordinates: 53°24′32″N 2°56′02″W / 53.409°N 2.934°W / 53.409; -2.934
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2011 Built-up Area showing subdivisions

The Liverpool Built-up Area (previously Liverpool Urban Area in 2001 and prior) is a term used by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to denote the urban area around Liverpool in England, to the east of the River Mersey. The contiguous built-up area extends beyond the area administered by Liverpool City Council into adjoining local authority areas, particularly parts of Sefton and Knowsley. As defined by ONS, the area extends as far east as St Helens, Haydock, and Ashton-in-Makerfield in Greater Manchester.[1][2]

The Liverpool Urban Area is not the same area as Merseyside (or Greater Merseyside), which includes areas of Wirral on the west bank of the Mersey and Southport.[1] The western extent of the Greater Manchester conurbation is narrowly avoided as that extends as far as Golborne and Newton-le-Willows, with small gaps separating those towns from Ashton-In-Makerfield and Haydock.


The Liverpool Urban Area defined by ONS covers Liverpool and its contiguous built-up areas, with a population of 864,122[3] a considerable increase from the 2001 census due to the rapid growth in the population of Liverpool during this period. The population of the area was 816,216 in the 2001 census,.[4] The urban area facing Liverpool on the Wirral Peninsula is a separate division known as the Birkenhead Urban Area.[5]

The ONS definition is based purely on physical criteria with a focus on the presence or absence of significant gaps between built-up areas. It therefore extends as far as Ashton-in-Makerfield, but excludes some areas much closer to Liverpool which are separated from it by open spaces, notably Kirkby with a narrow gap along the M57 motorway, and Maghull.

Subdivisions are not always aligned to present administrative or county borders. For example, Liverpool as designated by the ONS also containing the towns Huyton, Roby, and Halewood which are all within the neighbouring borough of Knowsley. St Helens only covers the settlement, and not the St Helens borough which contains Rainford and Haydock.

According to the ONS, the subcomponents of the Liverpool Urban Area are:

Urban subvision Population (2011)[3] Population (2001)[4] Population (1991)[1] Population (1981)[6]
Liverpool 552,267 469,017 481,786 538,809
St Helens 102,885 102,629 106,293 -
Bootle 51,394 59,123 65,454 70,860
Huyton-with-Roby - 54,766 56,500 62,011
Crosby 50,044 51,789 52,869 54,103
Prescot 37,911 39,695 37,486 -
Ashton-in-Makerfield 28,762 - - -
Litherland 18,507 22,242 20,905 21,989
Haydock 16,521 16,955 16,705 -
Rainford 5,831 - - -
Total 864,122 816,216 837,998 747,772


Greater Liverpool[edit]

Greater Liverpool is an informal term used by the Rent Service as one of its Broad Rental Market Areas (BRMA).[7] This area includes such districts outside the Liverpool City Council boundaries as Crosby, Maghull, Prescot and St Helens.

Merseytravel include a similar Greater Liverpool area for its Public Transport Map and Guide as seen on its Liverpool area map.[8]


  1. ^ a b c "Liverpool Urban Area". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 30 June 2008.
  2. ^ "2011 Liverpool Built-up Area Area". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  3. ^ a b "2011 Census - Built-up areas". ONS. Retrieved 29 June 2013.
  4. ^ a b "Key Statistics for urban areas in the North - Contents, Introduction, Tables KS01 - KS08" (PDF). Office for National Statistics. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 March 2009. Retrieved 30 June 2008.
  5. ^ "Birkenhead Urban Area". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 30 June 2008.
  6. ^ Census 1981 : key statistics for urban areas : the North, cities and towns. Great Britain. Office of Population Censuses and Surveys. London: H.M.S.O. 1984. ISBN 0116910615. OCLC 10979725.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  7. ^ Broad Rental Market Areas[permanent dead link] (select 'Liverpool' as the Local Authority and hit LA Search - then hit the 'Map' button at the bottom to give map)
  8. ^ Liverpool Area Public Transport Map and Guide

53°24′32″N 2°56′02″W / 53.409°N 2.934°W / 53.409; -2.934