The Ceremonal County of Berkshire
Berkshire is a ceremonial county. It is no longer an administrative county; Berkshire County Council was abolished in 1998, and was replaced by six Unitary Authorities:
Bracknell Forest Council
Reading Borough Council
Slough Borough Council
West Berkshire Council
The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead
Wokingham Borough Council
The ceremonial county of Berkshire consists of the area controlled administratively by these six unitary authorities, each of which is independent of the rest. The ceremonial county has a Lord-Lieutenant and a High Sheriff.
The Lieutenancy is supported by all six unitary authorities and works very closely with each of them. The Lord-Lieutenant maintains close relations with all civic dignitaries, and particularly with the Mayors of the Unitary Authorities, as well as Town Mayors and Parish Council Chairmen.
The county is also known as the Royal County of Berkshire. This title has been in use since at least the 19th century and was recognised as such by the Queen in 1957 and later when letters patent were issued in 1974.
Berkshire is a densely populated county with a population of over 860,000. It is a diverse county stretching from the edge of the London conurbation in the east to the rolling hills in the rural west and embracing both historic towns and major new towns and developments.
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