Some information about THE WESTERN REGION. It is one of nine official regions of England and has the largest in area, covering 9,200 square miles (23,800 km2) and the counties of Gloucestershire, Bristol, Wiltshire, Somerset, Dorset, Devon and Cornwall Five million people live in South West England.

The region includes the West Country and much of the ancient kingdom of Wessex. The largest city is Bristol. Other major urban centres include Plymouth, Swindon, Gloucester, Cheltenham, Exeter, Bath, Torbay, and the South East Dorset conurbation (which includes Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch).

There are eight cities: Salisbury, Bath, Wells, Bristol, Gloucester, Exeter, Plymouth and Truro. It includes two entire national parks, Dartmoor and Exmoor (a small part of the New Forest is also within the region); and four World Heritage Sites, including Stonehenge and the Jurassic Coast.

The northern part of Gloucestershire, near Chipping Campden, is as close to the Scottish border as it is to the tip of Cornwall. The region has by far the longest coastline in England and many seaside fishing towns.

The region was heavily populated during the Neolithic, Bronze Age and Iron Age periods. Many monuments, barrows and trackways exist. Coin evidence shows that the region was split between the Durotriges, Dobunni and Dumnonii. The Iron Age tribe in Dorset were the Durotriges, "water dwellers", whose main settlement is represented by Maiden Castle. The Celtic gods were worshipped at the temple of Sulis at Bath and possibly the temple on Brean Down. Iron Age sites on the Quantock Hills include major hill forts at Dowsborough and Ruborough, as well as smaller earthwork enclosures, such as Trendle Ring, Elworthy Barrows and Plainsfield Camp.

During the Roman era, the east of the region, particularly the Cotswolds and eastern Somerset, was heavily Romanised and Exeter was a regional capital. There are villas, farms and temples dating from the period, including the remains at Bath. After the Romans left at the start of the 5th century AD, the region split into several The Western Wandsdyke earthwork was probably built during the 5th or 6th century. This area became the border between the Romano-British Celts and the West Saxons following the Battle of Deorham in 577.

More about the history of the region here:-

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