North Ayrshire

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North Ayrshire
Sìorrachd Àir a Tuath
North Ayrshire in Scotland.svg
Official logo of North AyrshireSìorrachd Àir a Tuath
Logo
Coordinates: 55°40′N 4°47′W / 55.667°N 4.783°W / 55.667; -4.783Coordinates: 55°40′N 4°47′W / 55.667°N 4.783°W / 55.667; -4.783
Admin HQ Irvine
Government
 • Body North Ayrshire Council
 • Control Labour minority (council NOC)
 • MPs
 • MSPs
Area
 • Total 341.9 sq mi (885.4 km2)
Area rank Ranked 17th
Population (mid-2016 est.)
 • Total 135,900
 • Rank Ranked 15th
 • Density 400/sq mi (153/km2)
ONS code S12000021
ISO 3166 code GB-NAY
Website http://www.north-ayrshire.gov.uk/
North Ayrshire
Structure
Seats 33 councillors
11 / 33
11 / 33
7 / 33
0 / 33
4 / 33
Elections
Single transferable vote
Last election
4 May 2017
Meeting place
Cunninghame House, Irvine.jpg
Cunningham House, Irvine
Website
www.north-ayrshire.gov.uk

North Ayrshire (Scottish Gaelic: Siorrachd Àir a Tuath, pronounced [ʃirˠəxk aːɾʲ ə t̪ʰuə]) is one of 32 council areas in Scotland. It has a population of roughly 135,900 people.[1] It is located in the southwest of Scotland, and borders the areas of Inverclyde to the north, Renfrewshire to the northeast and East Ayrshire and South Ayrshire to the east and south respectively. North Ayrshire Council is a hung Council. North Ayrshire also forms part of the east coast of the Firth of Clyde.[2]

History and formation[edit]

The area was created in 1996 as a successor to the district of Cunninghame. The council headquarters are located in Irvine, which is the largest town. The area also contains the towns of Ardrossan, Beith, Dalry, Kilbirnie, Kilwinning, Largs, Saltcoats, Skelmorlie, Stevenston, West Kilbride, as well as the Isle of Arran and the Cumbrae Isles. The Isle of Arran covers nearly half of the council area's territory, but is home to less than 4% of the population.

Towns in the north (Fairlie, Largs and West Kilbride) are affluent commuter towns, while Ardrossan, Saltcoats, and Stevenston in the south, are rather more industrial. The inland Garnock Valley towns (Beith, Dalry and Kilbirnie) were once a centre of steel and textile production; however, this has long since gone. Tourism is the main industry on Arran and Cumbrae; however, the number of holiday homes on the latter has begun to squeeze locals out of the housing market. Regeneration is currently taking place at Ardrossan Harbour and Irvine town centre, and there has been a rapid increase in the construction of new housing in recent years.

Government[edit]

The SNP formed a minority administration in the North Ayrshire council area in May 2012, however, they were replaced by the Labour Party following a by-election in Irvine West in 2016. At the House of Commons, North Ayrshire is covered by the Central Ayrshire and North Ayrshire and Arran Parliamentary constituencies, both of which are represented by MPs belonging to the Scottish National Party. In the Scottish Parliament, the council area is divided into Cunninghame North and Cunninghame South, both represented by MSPs from the Scottish National Party.

Towns and villages[edit]

The main administration centre and largest settlement in North Ayrshire is Irvine, a new town on the coast of the Firth of Clyde, with a population of 39,527.

The second biggest settlement is Kilwinning which has a population of over 18,000. Other major population centres include Largs, and the Three Towns - Ardrossan, Saltcoats and Stevenston.

On the Isle of Arran, the largest village is Lamlash and there are numerous smaller villages. On Great Cumbrae, the only town on the island is Millport.

Places of interest[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]