Swansea (pronounced /ˈswɒnzi/ (deprecatit template) SWONZ-ee, Welsh: Abertawe, "mooth o the Tawe") is a coastal ceety an coonty in Wales. Swansea is in the historic coonty bundaries o Glamorgan. Situatit on the sandy Sooth Wast Wales coast, the coonty aurie includes the Gower Peninsula an the Lliw uplands. Swansea is the seicont maist muckle ceety in Wales efter Cairdiff an the third maist populous coonty in Wales efter Cairdiff an Rhondda Cynon Taf. Durin its 19t century industrial heyday, Swansea wis ane o the key centres o the warld copper industry, earnin the nickname 'Copperopolis'.

City and County of Swansea

Dinas a Sir Abertawe
A view o the Swansea coastline, near the ceety centre.
A view o the Swansea coastline, near the ceety centre.
Floreat Swansea
City and County of Swansea an (inset) athin Wales
City and County of Swansea
an (inset) athin Wales
Sovereign stateUnitit Kinrick
Constituent kintraWales
Ceremonial coountyWast Glamorgan
Historic coountyGlamorganshire
Admeen HQSwansea Guildhall
Toun chairter1158–1184
Ceety status1969
 • TeepPrincipal aurie, Ceety
 • Leader o
Swansea Cooncil
David Phillips
 • Welsh Assembly an UK Pairlament ConstituenciesSwansea East,
Swansea West,
 • European PairlamentWales
 • MPsMartin Caton (Lab),
Sian James (Lab),
Geraint Davies (Lab)
 • AMsEdwina Hart (Lab),
Mike Hedges (Lab),
Julie James (Lab)
 • Total378 km2 (146 sq mi)
 (2011, urban aurie figurs frae 2001)
 • TotalUnitar Authority aurie: 238,500 Rankit 2nd
Urban aurie athin Unitar Authority: 169,880
Wider Urban Aurie: 270,506
 • Density601/km2 (1,560/sq mi)
 • Ethnicity
97.8% White
1.2% S. Asie
0.3% Afro-Caribbean
0.3% Chinese
Time zoneUTC0 (GMT)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+1 (BST)
Post codes
Area code(s)01792
ISO 3166-2GB-SWA
ONS code00NX (ONS)
W06000011 (GSS)
OS grid referenceSS6593
Police ForceSouth Wales Police
Fire ServiceMid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service
Ambulance ServiceWelsh Ambulance Service



Airchaeological fynds are maistly confined tae the Gower Peninsula, an include items frae the Stane Age, Bronze Age, an Iron Age. The Romans visitit the aurie, as did the Vikings.

Swansea is thocht tae hae oreeginally developed as a Viking tradin post. Some think that its name is derived frae Sveinn's island (Auld Norse: Sveinsey) – the reference tae an island mey refer tae a bank at the mooth o the river Tawe, or aiblins an aurie o raised grund in mairshes. An alternative explanation is that the name derives frae the Norse name 'Sweyn' an 'ey', which can mean inlet.

The earliest kent form o the modren name is Sweynesse, which wis uised in the first charter grantit sometime atween 1158–1184 bi William de Newburgh, 3rd Earl o Warwick. The charter gae Swansea the status o a borough, grantin the tounsmen, cried burgesses certain richts tae develop the aurie. A seicont chairter wis grantit in 1215 bi Keeng John. In this charter, the name appears as Sweyneshe. The toun seal which is believed tae date frae this period names the toun as Sweyse.

Swansea Castle

Follaein the Norman Conquest, a maircher lordship wis creatit unner the title o Gower. It includit land aroond Swansea Bay as far as the River Tawe, the manor o Kilvey ayont the Tawe, an the peninsula itsel. Swansea wis designatit chief toun o the lordship an received a borough chairter some time atween 1158 an 1184 (an a mair elaborate ane in 1304).

Industrial Revolution


The port o Swansea initially tradit in wine, hides, wuil, cloth an later in coal. As the Industrial Revolution reached Wales, the combination o port, local coal, an tradin links wi the Wast Kintra, Cornwall an Devon, meant that Swansea wis the logical place tae site copper smeltin wirks. Smelters wur operatin bi 1720 an proliferatit. Follaing this, mair coal mines (aawhaur frae north-east Gower tae Clyne an Llangyfelach) wur opened an smelters (maistly alang the Tawe valley) wur opened an flourished. Ower the next century an a hauf, wirks war established tae process arsenic, zinc an tin an tae creaut tinplate an pottery. The ceety expandit rapidly in the 18t an 19t centuries, an wis termed "Copperopolis".

Frae the late 17t century tae 1801, Swansea's population grew bi 500% — the first offeecial census (in 1841) indicatit that, wi 6,099 indwallers, Swansea haed acome significantly lairger than Glamorgan's coonty toun, Cardiff, an wis the seicont maist populous toun in Wales ahint Merthyr Tydfil (which haed a population o 7,705). Housomeivver, the census unnerstatit Swansea's true size, as muckle o the biggit-up aurie lay ootside the contemporary bundaries o the borough; the tot population wis actually 10,117. Swansea's population wis later owertaken bi Merthyr in 1821 an bi Cardiff in 1881, awtho in the latter year Swansea ance again surpassed Merthyr. Muckle o Swansea's growthe wis due tae migration frae athin an ayont Wales — in 1881, mair nor a third o the borough's population haed been born ootside Swansea an Glamorgan, an juist unner a quarter ootside Wales.

20t century


Throu the 20t century, hivy industries in the toun declined, leavin the Lawer Swansea Valley filled wi derelict wirks an moonds o waste products frae them. The Lawer Swansea Valley Scheme (which still continues) reclaimed muckle o the land. The present Enterprise Zone wis the result an, o the mony oreeginal docks, anerlie those ootside the ceety continue tae wirk as docks; North Dock is nou Parc Tawe an Sooth Dock became the Marina.

Little ceety-centre evidence, ayont pairts o the road layoot, remains frae medieval Swansea; its industrial importance made it the target o bombin, kent as the Blitz in Warld War II, an the centre wis flattened completely. The ceety haes three Grade Ane leetit biggins, thir bein the Guildhall, Swansea Castle an the Morriston Tabernacle.

Athin the ceety centre are the ruins o the castle, the Marina, the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea Museum, the Dylan Thomas Centre, the Environmental Centre, an the Market, which is the lairgest covered mercat in Wales. It backs ontae the Quadrant Shopping Centre which opened in 1978 an the adjoinin St David's Centre opened in 1982. Ither notable modren biggins are the BT Touer (umwhile the GPO touer) biggit aroond 1970, Alexandra House opened in 1976, Coonty Hall opened in Julie 1982. Swansea Leisure Centre opened in 1977; it haes unnergane extensive refurbishment which retained elements o the oreeginal structur an re-opened in Mairch 2008. Ahint it staunds the National Waterfront Museum, opened in October 2005.

Swansea wis grantit ceety status in 1969, tae merk Prince Charles's investiture as the Prince o Wales. The annooncement wis made bi the prince on 3 Julie 1969, durin a tour o Wales. It obtained the further richt tae hae a lord mayor in 1982.


Liberty Stadium, hame o Swansea Ceety an The Ospreys

Strang local rivalries exist atween Swansea Ceety A.F.C. an Cairdiff in fitbaa, Swansea RFC an Llanelli an the Ospreys an Scarlets in Rugby.

Swansea Ceety moved frae the Vetch Field tae the new Liberty Stadium at the stairt o the 2005–2006 saison, winnin promotion tae League Ane in thair final year at thair auld hame.

Swansea haes three clubs that play in the Welsh Fitbaa League: Garden Village, Sooth Gower an West End.

In 2003, Swansea RFC merged wi Neath RFC te form the Neath-Swansea Ospreys rugby club. Swansea RFC remained at St Helen's in semi-professional form, but the Ospreys moved intae the Liberty Stadium in Landore for the stairt o the 2005–2006 saison. Neath-Swansea rugby gemmes uised tae be hotly-contestit matches, such that thare wis some debate aboot whether a team incorporatin baith auries wis possible. The team came fift in the Celtic League in thair first year o existence an toppin that league in thair seicont year.

St Helens Rugby and Cricket Ground is the hame o Swansea RFC an Glamorgan County Cricket Club hae previously played matches thare. In this grund, Sir Garfield Sobers hit sax saxes in ane ower; the first time this wis achieved in a gemme o first-class cricket. The final baw landit on the grund past the Cricketers' pub juist ootside the grund.

Swansea's rugby league side plays seeven mile ootside the coonty in the sma toun o Ystalyfera. Thay are kent as the Swansea Valley Miners but wur formed as the Swansea Bulls in 2002.

The Swansea Bowls Stadium opened in early 2008. The stadium hostit the Warld Indoor Singles an Mixed Pairs Championship in Aprile 2008 an the Gravelles Welsh Internaitional Open Bowls Championships in 2009.

Internaitional relations




Swansea is twinned wi:

Connections wi:

Friendship link wi:

Freemit airtins


Coordinates: 51°37′N 3°57′W / 51.617°N 3.950°W / 51.617; -3.950