Lancashire is a non-metropolitan county of historic origin in the North West of England. It takes its name from the city of Lancaster, and is sometimes known as the County of Lancaster. Although Lancaster is still considered to be the county town, Lancashire County Council is based in Preston. Lancashire is sometimes referred to by the abbreviation Lancs. The population of the county is around 1.5million. People from the county are known as Lancastrians.
In the 19th century Lancashire was a major centre of industrial activity and hence of wealth. Activities included mining and textile production, though on the coast there was also fishing. Historically, Lancashire was historically the location of the port of Liverpool while Barrow-in-Furness is famous for shipbuilding.
The major settlements in the ceremonial county are concentrated on the Fylde coast (the Blackpool Urban Area), and a belt of towns running west-east along the M65: Preston, Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley, Nelson and Colne. South of Preston are the towns of Leyland and Chorley.
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