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Flintshire ( ) is one of thirteen historic counties and a former administrative county of Walesmarker, which mostly lay on the north-east coast of Wales.

Flintshire was notable as having one of the few large county exclaves (an area known as English Maelor) to survive most of the 20th century.

The administrative county of Flintshire was abolished under the Local Government Act 1972 on April 1, 1974, becoming part of the new county of Clwyd. The exclaves became part of Wrexham Maelormarker district - other parts formed the districts of Alyn and Deeside, Delyn and Rhuddlan. A principal area named Flintshire was formed in 1996 under the Local Government Act 1994, consisting only of the Alyn and Deeside and Delyn districts - the Wrexham Maelor parts now form part of Wrexham county borough, with the former Rhuddlan district forming part of the Denbighshire principal area.

Geography

The historic county did not have the same boundaries as the current Flintshire; in particular it had a large exclave called Maelor Saesneg, it also included Prestatynmarker, Rhylmarker and St Asaphmarker which are now part of Denbighshire, as well as Bangor-on-Deemarker and Overton-on-Deemarker, which are part of Wrexham county borough. Other exclaves of Flintshire included the manors of Marford and Hoseleymarker, Abenbury Fechan and Bryn Estyn, all on the outskirts of Wrexham, and also a small part of the parish of Erbistockmarker around the Boat Inn. These were all completely surrounded by Denbighshire. Additionally, a small part of Flintshire, including the village of Sealand, was isolated across the River Dee when its course was changed to improve navigation.

The county was formed in 1284 under the terms of the Statute of Rhuddlan and included Cantrefi formerly parts of Gwynedd Is Conwymarker and Powys Fadogmarker:



It also included the Lordships of Moldmarker, Hawardenmarker, Mostynmarker and Hope.

Flintshire is a maritime county bounded to the north by the Irish Seamarker, to the northeast by the Dee estuary, to the east by Cheshiremarker and to the south and southwest by Denbighshire. The Maelor Saesneg, was bounded on the northwest by Denbighshire, on the northeast by Cheshiremarker, and on the south by Shropshiremarker.

Flintshire is the smallest historic county in Wales. The coast along the Dee estuary is heavily developed by industry and the north coast much developed for tourism. The Clwydian Mountains occupy much of the west of the county. The highest point is Moel Fammaumarker (1,820 feet / 554 metres). The chief towns are Buckleymarker, Connah's Quaymarker, Flintmarker, Hawardenmarker, Holywellmarker, Moldmarker, Queensferrymarker, and Shotton. The main rivers are the Dee (the estuary of which forms much of the coast) and the Clwydmarker. The main industries are manufacturing of aircraft components (Airbus), engines (Toyota), paper (Shotton Paper), steel processing (Corus), agriculture and tourism.

Places of special interest include castles in Flint, Hawarden, Rhuddlan and Ewloe, and Wepre Country Park, Connah's Quay.

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