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Staffordshire

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Historic Staffordshire

Staffordshire - Famous People

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Staffordshire (/ˈstæfərdʃɪər/ or pron.: /ˈstæfərdʃər/; abbreviated Staffs) is a landlocked county in the West Midlands region of England. Part of the National Forest lies within its borders. It adjoins the ceremonial counties of Cheshire (to the north west), Derbyshire (to the east), Leicestershire (to the east), Warwickshire (to the south east), West Midlands (to the south), Worcestershire (to the south), and Shropshire (to the west).

The largest city in Staffordshire is Stoke-on-Trent, which is administered separately from the rest of the county as an independent unitary authority. Lichfield also has city status, although this is a considerably smaller cathedral city. Major towns include Stafford (the county town), Burton upon Trent, Cannock, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Leek and Tamworth.

Wolverhampton, Walsall, West Bromwich and Smethwick were also in Staffordshire until local government reorganisation in 1974, but are now within the West Midlands County in the West Midlands Conurbation.

With the exception of Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire is divided into the districts of Cannock Chase, East Staffordshire, Lichfield, Newcastle-under-Lyme, South Staffordshire, Stafford, Staffordshire Moorlands, and Tamworth.

For Eurostat purposes the county (less the unitary district of Stoke-on-Trent) is a NUTS 3 region (code UKG24). Together with Stoke-on-Trent and the authorities covering the ceremonial county of Shropshire, it comprises the "Shropshire and Staffordshire" NUTS 2 region.


Economy Stafford town centreThis is a chart of trend of regional gross value added of the non-metropolitan county of Staffordshire at current basic prices published (pp. 240–253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of British Pounds Sterling.

Some nationally and internationally known companies have their base in Staffordshire.They include The Britannia Building Society which is based in Leek. JCB is based in Rocester near Uttoxeter.The theme park Alton Towers is in the Staffordshire Moorlands and several of the world's largest pottery manufacturers are based in Stoke-on-Trent.

Education

Staffordshire has a completely comprehensive system with eight independent schools. Most secondary schools are from 11–16 or 18, but two in Staffordshire Moorlands and South Staffordshire are from 13–18. Resources are shared where appropriate, as per the example of Kingsmead Technology College, Blake High School and Norton Canes High School combining their sixth forms to create a "Sixth Form Consortium", which can offer a greater selection of subjects than each school could individually.

Two universities are located in the county. Keele University is located in Newcastle-under-Lyme. Staffordshire University has four campuses located in Stoke-on-Trent, Stafford, Lichfield and Shrewsbury.[6]

[edit] SportThe modern county of Staffordshire currently has three professional football clubs – Stoke City and Port Vale both from Stoke-on-Trent and Burton Albion who play in Burton upon Trent.

Stoke City, one of the oldest professional football clubs in existence, were founded in 1863 and played at the Victoria Ground for 119 years from 1878 until their relocation to the Britannia Stadium in 1997. They were among the 12 founder members of the Football League in 1888.[7] By the late 1930s, they were established First Division members and boasted arguably the finest footballer in England at the time in right-winger Stanley Matthews, who had two spells with the club between 1930 and his retirement in 1965 at the age of 50.[8] In 1972, the club finally won a major trophy when they lifted the Football League Cup,[9] but after relegation from the First Division in 1985 they would not experience top flight football for 23 years.[10] After spending some two decades bouncing between the second and third tiers of the English league, they finally reclaimed their top flight status in 2008 by securing promotion to the FA Premier League – where they have remained ever since.[11] Stoke City reached their first FA Cup final in 2011, but lost to Manchester City.[12]

Port Vale, who like Stoke City play in Stoke-on-Trent, were formed in 1876 and became members of the Football League in 1892. After more than 70 years at various stadiums around the city, the club moved to its present home, Vale Park, in 1950. In early 1936, they had famously eliminated First Division champions Sunderland from the FA Cup. Another surprise FA Cup success came in February 1988 when they eliminated seven-time winners Tottenham Hotspur from the competition. Promotion to the Second Division for the first time since the 1960s was secured in 1989, and Vale would spent nine of the next 11 years at this level. However, the club has been less successful since the turn of the 21st century, and suffered relegation to League Two – the fourth tier of the English league – in 2008. The club has yet to win promotion from this division.[13]

The counties other professional Football team is Burton Albion from Burton Upon Trent who currently play in Football League Two, after securing promotion from the Conference for the first time in the 2008–09 season.

The county has a number of non-league football clubs, including Stafford Rangers,[14] Hednesford Town[15] and Leek Town.[16]

In cricket, Staffordshire is one of the nineteen Minor counties of English and Welsh cricket. It is represented in Minor counties cricket by Staffordshire County Cricket Club who have played in the Minor Counties Championship since 1895, a competition which it has won outright ten times, making it one of the most successful Minor counties teams. Among famous international cricketers produced by the county include Sydney Barnes and Dominic Cork, both of who went on to represent England.

[edit] GeographySee the List of reservoirs in Staffordshire


Mow Cop Castle on the Staffordshire MoorlandsIn the north and in the south the county is hilly, with wild moorlands in the far north and Cannock Chase an area of natural beauty in the south. In the middle regions the landscape is low and undulating. Throughout the entire county there are vast and important coalfields. In the southern part there are also rich iron ore deposits. The largest river is the Trent. The soil is chiefly clay and agriculture was not highly developed until the mechanisation of farms.

Staffordshire is home to the highest village in Britain, Flash. The village, in the Staffordshire Moorlands, stands at 463 m (1518 ft) above sea level. This record was confirmed in 2007 by the Ordnance Survey after Wanlockhead in Scotland also claimed the record. The BBC's The One Show investigated the case in a bid to settle the argument and Flash was confirmed as the highest. The highest point in Staffordshire is Cheeks Hill.

[edit] DemographicsAccording to the 2001 Census the population of the Non-metropolitan Staffordshire is 806,744 and the population of Stoke-on-Trent was 240,636 making a total population of 1,047,380. In non-metropolitan Staffordshire, White British is the largest ethnicity, making up 96% of the population. This is followed by White Irish, making up 0.6%. Non-White citizens make up 2% of the population.[17] 94% of the population was born in England, and those born in Scotland and Wales together make up 1% of the total population.[18]

Dogs

A type of bull terrier called the Staffordshire Bull Terrier was bred for hunting purposes in this county. They are known affectionately as "staffs", "staffies", and "nanny-dogs". Staffies should not be confused with the considerably larger American Staffordshire Terrier, American Pit Bull Terrier, and (English) Bull Terrier.

Religion

Church of England

The only Cathedral in the county is Lichfield Cathedral in the city of Lichfield, the Diocese of Lichfield covers the whole county with the exception of Stapenhill and Amington, and much of the nearby county of Shropshire and the Black Country area of the West Midlands County. The county is covered by the archdeaconries of Stoke-on-Trent and Lichfield. The current Bishop of Lichfield is Jonathan Gledhill and the current Bishop of Stafford Geoff Annas. There are 298 Church of England Churches in the County.

Methodism Primitive Methodism was founded in Staffordshire by Hugh Bourne, a native of Stoke-on-Trent, at a public gathering in the village of Mow Cop. He originally followed the Wesleyan form of Methodism but in 1801 he reformed the Methodist service by conducting it outside. By 1811 with his brother he founded the first chapel in the Tunstall area of Stoke-on-Trent.[21]

Judaism The most popular Synagogue in the county is on London Road in Newcastle-Under-Lyme which opened in 2006 and replaced the former "Birch Terrace" Synagogue in Hanley[22] according to the 2001 census there were 407 Jewish People in the non-metropolitan area of Staffordshire,[23] and 83 is Stoke-on-Trent,[24] With a total population of 8090 which makes up around 1.4% of the total population of the county.

Islam There are 15 mosques in Stoke-on-Trent, 4 in Burton-upon-Trent and 1 in both Stafford and Lichfield.[25] A new mosque[26][27][28] is under construction in the Hanley area of Stoke-on-Trent and will be the first purpose built mosque in the area. At the 2001 census there were 7,658 Muslims in Stoke-on-Trent and 6,081 in the rest of Staffordshire, with a total of 13,739 making up 1.3% of the population. 62.9% (3823) of the Muslims in the rest of Staffordshire are from the town of Burton-upon-Trent

Media

Daily Newspapers in Staffordshire are The Sentinel covering Stoke-on-Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme and the Staffordshire Moorlands, Burton Mail which covers the town of Burton-upon-Trent and the Express & Star which has several editions covering Tamworth, Lichfield, Cannock Chase and Stafford.

The local BBC radio stations covering Staffordshire are BBC Radio Stoke covering Mid and North Staffordshire, BBC WM covering the south of the county and BBC Radio Derby covering East Staffordshire. The local commercial radio stations are Signal 1, Signal 2 and Cross Rhythms City Radio which are broadcast from Stoke-on-Trent, Moorlands Radio which is broadcast from Leek and Touch Radio which is broadcast from Tamworth.

Staffordshire is covered by the ITV Central and BBC West Midlands television regions both of which have their studios in Birmingham.