Your council

Devolution and unitarisation

Our size is our strength

York is among the best places to live in the UK, renowned for community spirit and driving innovation inside and outside our historic city walls. York is among the best places to live in the UK, renowned for community spirit and driving innovation inside and outside our historic city walls.

York is a compact, low-rise, walkable, cyclable, liveable and welcoming city. With millions of visitors a year and a population of 210,000, it still feels intimate and personal. This personal interaction creates a strong sense of community, which in turn creates social awareness.

At just 34 square kilometres, the built up urban area of York is much smaller than regional centres like Leeds (487 square kilometres) or Greater Manchester (630 square kilometres) or even comparable heritage cities such as Norwich (62 square kilometres) or Cambridge (42 square kilometres).

There is data to suggest in The Role Of Small And Medium-Sized Towns And Cities In Growing The Northern Powerhouse report 2016, that people living in small and medium cities may enjoy a higher quality of life and personal wellbeing relative to their counterparts in larger cities.

The Talk York Consultation in 2019, heard from over 5,000 people who told us one of our key strengths is our size. The consultation told us that York has all the benefits of city living - access to culture, transport connections, educational and business opportunities and vibrant communities - whilst remaining very much on a human scale.

We need to understand the deep significance of the human scale of this city. This human scale is translated into a strong humane quality to society in York. Built on its quaker heritage, York has a strong social conscience, individuality and independent spirit (Talk York, 2019).


Also see

Our Big Conversation

West Offices, Station Rise, York YO1 6GA