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The Metropolitan Borough of Walsall is a local government district of West Midlands, England, with the status of a metropolitan borough. It is named after its largest settlement, Walsallmarker, but covers a larger area which also includes the towns of Aldridgemarker, Brownhillsmarker, Darlastonmarker, Streetlymarker and Willenhallmarker. The borough had an estimated population of 254,500 in 2007.

The current boundaries were set as part of the provisions of the Local Government Act 1972, with a change to the north of the borough in 1994. It is bounded on the west by the City of Wolverhamptonmarker, the south by the Metropolitan Borough of Sandwell, to the south east by the City of Birminghammarker, and by the Staffordshire districts of Lichfieldmarker, Cannock Chasemarker and South Staffordshiremarker to the east, north and northwest respectively. Most of the borough is highly industrialised and densely populated, but areas around the north and east of the borough are open space.

In 1986 the borough became an effective unitary authority when the West Midlands County Council was abolished. However it remains part of the West Midlands for ceremonial purposes, and for functions such as policing, fire and public transport.


Parliamentary constituencies

The residents of the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall are represented in the British Parliamentmarker by Members of Parliament (MPs) for three separate parliamentary constituencies. Walsall Northmarker is represented by David Winnick MP (Labour). Walsall Southmarker is represented by Bruce George MP (Labour). Aldridge-Brownhillsmarker is represented by Richard Shepherd MP (Conservative). The borough is part of the West Midlands constituency in the European Parliamentmarker. The West Midlands region elects six MEPs, as at 2009 made up of two Conservatives, one from the Labour Party, one Liberal Democrat, and two members of the United Kingdom Independence Party.


In 1974, Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council was created to administer the newly formed metropolitan borough. The council offices are located in Walsall town centre. Between its formation in 1974 and 2003, the council has varied between control by the Labour Party, and where no one party has an overall majority. Since 2003, the Conservative Party have held a majority of councillors. The council has a constitution detailing how they should operate in performing their duties. Councillor John O'Hare is Mayor of Walsall for 2009–10.

Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council was assessed by the Audit Commission in 2008 and judged to be "improving well" in providing services for local people. Overall the council was awarded "three star" status meaning it was "performing well" and "consistently above minimum requirements", similar to 46% of all local authorities.

The Metropolitan Borough of Walsall is based on an amalgamation of two former local government districts, Walsall County Boroughmarker and Aldridge-Brownhills Urban Districtmarker. Both areas had previously seen major changes in 1966, with Walsall County Borough being expanded to cover areas formerly administered by the Municipal Boroughs of Bilstonmarker and Wednesburymarker, as well as the Urban Districts of Coseleymarker, Darlastonmarker, Willenhallmarker and Wednesfieldmarker, though it should be noted that in all cases only parts of those areas were transferred into the County Borough, with other areas being moved into different authorities. Aldridge-Brownhills Urban District was created from the majority of the former Urban Districts of Aldridgemarker and Brownhillsmarker, along with some smaller areas from other local authorities.
Party political make-up of Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council
   Party Seats Current Council (2008–10)
2007 2008
  Conservative 33 33                                                                                                                      
  Labour 18 18                                                                                                                        
  Lib Dems 6 6                                                                                                                        
  Other 3 3                                                                                                                        

Electoral wards

The Metropolitan Borough Council has 60 local councillors representing 20 wards. The wards are:

Ward name Area (ha)/mi2 Population

(2001 census)
Population density (people per hectare) Ref.
Aldridge Central and South 12,267 10.73
Aldridge North and Walsall Wood 12,874 16.43
Bentley and Darlaston North 13,689 31.19
Birchills Leamore 13,659 33.05
Blakenall 11,950 33.86
Bloxwich East 11,072 29.99
Bloxwich West 14,816 38.15
Brownhillsmarker 12,637 17.45
Darlaston South 12,252 36.64
Paddock 13,073 23.92
Palfrey 14,596 39.71
Pelsallmarker 14,344 28.74
Pheasey Park Farm 10,435 13.76
Pleckmarker 10,653 31.53
Rushall-Shelfieldmarker 11,754 20.37
Short Heath 11,435 30.05
St. Matthew's 12,214 34.64
Streetlymarker 13,251 17.66
Willenhall North 12,536 53.41
Willenhall South 13,795 28.70
Walsall MBC 253,499 24.39


Walsall MBC Compared
2001 UK Census Walsall MBC West Midlands county Englandmarker
Total population 253,499 2,555,592 49,138,831
White 86.4% 79.9% 90.9%
Asian 10.5% 13.4% 4.6%
Black 1.4% 3.7% 2.3%
Source: Office for National Statistics

At the time of the United Kingdom Census 2001, according to the Office for National Statistics, the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall had a total resident population of 253,499, of which 123,189 (48.6%) were male and 130,310 (51.4%) were female, with 101,333 households. The Borough occupied at the time of the 2001 census.

Its population density was 24.39 people per hectare compared with an average of 28.41 across the West Midlands metropolitan county. The median age of the population was 37, compared with 36 within the West Midlands metropolitan county and 37 across England and Wales.

The majority of the population of the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall were born in England (91.77%); 1.42% were born elsewhere within the United Kingdommarker, 0.82% within the rest of the European Union, and 6.00% elsewhere in the world.

Data on religious beliefs across the borough in the 2001 census show that 72.1% declared themselves to be Christian, 10.0% said they held no religion, and 5.4% reported themselves as Muslim.

The Metropolitan Borough of Walsall is split between several Travel to Work Areas (TTWA). The central and northern areas of the borough (including the towns of Walsallmarker,Bloxwichmarker and Brownhillsmarker) are within the Walsallmarker & Cannockmarker TTWA, whilst the majority of the area west of the M6 motorway (including the towns of Willenhallmarker and Darlastonmarker) is within the Wolverhamptonmarker TTWA. The southeast of the Metropolitan Borough (including Streetlymarker) is within the Birminghammarker TTWA. The entire borough is within the Birmingham Larger Urban Zone.

At the time of the 2001 Census, there were 105,590 people (41.7%) in employment who were resident within Walsall Metropolitan Borough. Of these, 18.60% worked within the wholesale and retail trade, including repair of motor vehicles; 26.44% worked within manufacturing industry; and 9.85% worked within the health and social work sector. 42.84% of households owned a single car or van, with 31.05% owning none. The average car ownership per household was 1.01, compared with 0.96 across the West Midlands metropolitan county.

Population change

The table below details the population change in the area since 1801. Although the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall has existed as a metropolitan borough only since 1974, figures have been generated by combining data from the towns, villages, and civil parishes that would later be constituent parts of the borough.
Historical population of area now covered by the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall
Year 1801 1811 1821 1831 1841 1851 1861 1871 1881 1891
Population 17,615 20,329 22,309 27,640 37,670 46,597 67,260 87,923 108,586 125,317
Year 1901 1911 1921 1931 1941 1951 1961 1971 1981 1991 2001
Population 140,919 158,465 169,406 181,114 194,983 209,918 239,729 273,794 265,908 263,399 253,502
Source: Vision of Britain





45% of pupils in the Borough of Walsall achieved five GCSEs with grades of A*-C, below the national average of 56%.

The borough's education format is a traditional 5-7 infant, 7-11 junior and 11-16/18 secondary school system, with some infant and junior schools being combined single site primary schools, while others have infant and junior schools on separate sites. The towns of Walsall, Bloxwich, Darlaston and Willenhall have always used these age ranges, but the Aldridge, Brownhills and Streetly areas (which became part of the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall in 1974) adopted 5-9 first, 9-13 middle and 13-16/18 secondary schools in September 1972. However, this system was discontinued and replaced with the traditional age ranges in September 1986 to fit in with the other schools in the Walsall borough.


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