The 70th UK City, the 52nd in England

Around a year ago I wrote a couple of pieces about UK cities, prompted by quiz questions from the preceding weeks. The first of these pieces, here, listed the cities in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, and included mnemonics that help me to remember them: “I gasped” for the 7 cities in Scotland, “Bland” for the 5 cities in Northern Ireland and “CBSNSS” (or “C Business”, without the vowels) for the 6 cities in Wales.

The follow-up piece, here, listed the 51 cities in England and included various mnemonics to help me remember them by region. As noted in the original piece, the list of UK cities “grows from time to time”. It has grown by one in the last six months.

Southend-on-Sea became the 70th UK city, the 52nd in England, in January. According to this Wikipedia page, “City status was officially granted by letters patent dated 26 January 2022”. Other Wikipedia pages, such as this one, which I linked to in my original post, have not been updated yet. At some point I will amend my own lists and mnemonics but I will wait until later in the spring. As this Press Release from the UK government website tells us, 38 places “have applied for city status as part of the 2022 Platinum Jubilee Civic Honours Competition”.

The list includes Bangor in Northern Ireland, which might confuse things a bit, as Bangor in Wales is already a city. Among the English places that have applied are Blackburn, Bournemouth, Colchester and Guildford. The last of these has often been given as an incorrect answer on quiz shows: it has a cathedral but is not yet a city.

For the first time, there are locations in British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies also applying for city status, so within a few weeks I might have to find a way to add George Town (Cayman Islands), Gibraltar or Stanley (Falkland Islands) to my posts from last year. I’ll wait until all the new cities are announced to add Southend-on-Sea to my earlier posts.


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