Northumberland is a county in the North East of England. The non-metropolitan county of Northumberland
borders Cumbria to the west, County Durham to the south and Tyne and Wear to the south east, as well as having a
border with the Scottish Borders council area to the north, and nearly eighty miles of North Sea coastline. Since
1974 the county council has been located in Morpeth, situated in the east of the county; however, both Morpeth and
Alnwick claim the title county town.
As the kingdom of Northumbria under King Edwin
, the region's
historical boundaries stretched from
the Humber in the south to the Forth in the north. The historic boundaries of the county cover a different area,
including Newcastle-upon-Tyne, the traditional county town, as well as Tynemouth and other settlements in North Tyneside
areas administered by Tyne and Wear since 1974 under the Local Government Act 1972. The historic boundaries of
the county are sometimes taken to exclude Islandshire, Bedlingtonshire and Norhamshire (collectively North Durham),
exclaves of County Durham which were incorporated into Northumberland in 1844.
Being on the border of Scotland and England, Northumberland has been the site of many battles.
The county is noted for its undeveloped landscape of high moorland, a favourite with landscape painters,
and now largely protected as a National Park. In 2008 Northumberland is the most sparsely populated county
Northumberland's county flower is the Bloody Cranesbill
(Geranium sanguineum) and the county's affiliated Royal Navy ship is her namesake,