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Last edited 27 Apr 2022
More recently its meaning has become more ambiguous, taken variously to mean:
- A large, densely populated urban area.
- The main city of a region or county.
- An important city, such as a city that is the centre of a particular activity. For example an industrial metropolis.
Similarly important, but smaller cities may be referred to as a regiopolis.
In the United Kingdom, the designation 'metropolis' historically referred only to London, hence the name of the Metropolitan Police Service. However, the term has been expanded to allow other designations such as metropolitan counties, metropolitan districts and metropolitan areas.
Six metropolitan counties were established under the Local Government Act 1972. This Act introduced a major reorganisation of local government boundaries across Great Britain, merging smaller district councils and altering the boundaries of county council areas. The metropolitan counties were Greater Manchester, Merseyside, South Yorkshire, Tyne and Wear, West Midlands and West Yorkshire.
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