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There is another thread about the true definition of London, however a relatively simple definition is where do the built streets continue to without any fields, parks or open spaces creating a gap.

For example to the North of London you have Hoddeson, which extends up to a village called Hailey with St. Margarets Road a whole 24.3 miles from Charing Cross.

http://goo.gl/maps/1SqUI

To the South West, you have Woking going out to Hook Heath road, 27.7 miles.

http://goo.gl/maps/f3ybN

Can anyone find further?

It's not 100% scientific because of the windy routes taken but using the walking option it does a good idea relatively.
 

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BLAND
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No, cant think of any others.

However, I find it interesting that one can walk all the way to my house in Ruislip from the centre of London through urban/suburban streets. Travel three more blocks north from my house and you are in Park Wood. You can then walk through countryside indefinitely without going through any more urbanisation. There is urbanisation either side of that wood. It is a sort of an indent or undulation of London's physical boundary.
 

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Imagine if there had never been a green belt and ribbon development as in the 1920s and 30s had been permitted, we might have had urban tentacles from London extending southward to Brighton and the Sussex coast, and northwards perhaps a line of development may have extended up what is now the M1/M6 corridor up to the midlands and Manchester/Liverpool, or westward to Bristol and Cardiff. This pattern of development obviously freaked out planners in the 30s-60s hence the post war satellite town developments.
 

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^^^ I am slightly worried that we may soon find ourselves in that position again, what with new planning policy.
 

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^^^ I am slightly worried that we may soon find ourselves in that position again, what with new planning policy.
Politicians just take for granted that somehow we'll manage to import enough food and resources forever, no matter how much the population continues to rise.

Fingers crossed we'll always be able to rely on access to the fruits of someone else's spare land....

Fields? Who needs them!
 

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you mean all that billions of pounds of excess food and food waste we produce?
Britain imports over 40% of the food it consumes, and a far larger percentage of the raw materials needed to build and power our society.

The global footprint of our population is vastly larger than the ability of our land to sustainably resource our needs.

Even if nobody wasted a pea, we are already hopelessly reliant on other people's land. Even if people are willing to destroy pristine natural environments to feed us (Mars bars are made with palm oil from freshly destroyed rainforests in SE Asia for example), there's no law written into the stars that we can always rely on them in the future. A billion people go hungry each day as it is, and the global demand for food is rocketing as populations spiral and development leads to a huge increase in the per-capita demand for food and resources.

Rainforest alone is being lost to agriculture at the rate of the area of Panama EACH YEAR.

But hey, let's pretend that the only problem we have is people throwing out chickens without picking all the flesh off.
 

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are you talking about food for gluttony or food for nutrition? Certainly rainforest destruction is the former.

Food waste in the West is hardly bits of chicken left on a bone!

And why are you always horrified by densifying cities when you are so concerned by a lack of agricultural land?

It seems your dogmatic concept of urban beauty is getting in the way.
 

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With a few small gaps London's built up area stretches as far as Southend-on-Sea. The total gap amounts to only slightly more than 1km. This is really noticeable on google maps. And if you zoom in you can see narrow stretches of urbanity almost connecting the gaps. Which makes London arguably a coastal city.

London's continuously built up area stretches almost as far as Reading according to Wikipedia's Reading/Wokingham Urban Area article.

The distance between these two extremities is around 100 miles (according to google maps but that's not the direct route which is slightly less at aobut 90 miles) which makes London seem huge at almost 100 miles across.
 

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It is a good point, particularly considering how much of suburban Tokyo is farmland. Tokyo gets SERIOUSLY suburban and low density, yet these areas are still considered part of the Tokyo Metropolis.

This is Tokyo.

 

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With a few small gaps London's built up area stretches as far as Southend-on-Sea. The total gap amounts to only slightly more than 1km. This is really noticeable on google maps. And if you zoom in you can see narrow stretches of urbanity almost connecting the gaps. Which makes London arguably a coastal city.

London's continuously built up area stretches almost as far as Reading according to Wikipedia's Reading/Wokingham Urban Area article.

The distance between these two extremities is around 100 miles (according to google maps but that's not the direct route which is slightly less at aobut 90 miles) which makes London seem huge at almost 100 miles across.
The western wedge is mainly low density suburban sprawl. People don't really notice it because a lot of the Land to West of London is poor farmland and hence is/was covered by pine forest and heathland. Apart from Windsor great park and a few army training grounds nearly all the rest has long been developed.

You don't notice sometimes, because some areas are the homes of the super rich and each plot is an acre or two and all you see is fenced off woodland with an occasional secure gateway. Every so often the density increases and the house begin to emerge from the trees and suddenly you are in a small stretch of high street with a waitrose and then the tress are back again.

To give you an idea i drew a quick map.

Red areas denser suburban towns

Orange areas dominated by large plot size housing.



 

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@rational plan. really great maps and so useful...I grew up at the western edge of Surrey, there was no local industry really ( might have changed ), Everyone caught the train into waterloo for work...but i cant imagine the people in Surrey being described as Londoners : )
So London population is 8174000, urban 8278000, metro is 13700000 as on wiki. Do most people agree with that?
 

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What's not to agree with? These towns and villages have grown and merged because if their proximity to London, the numbers of people who commute to London from said areas, and the businesses located here as a result of the population rise and good transport and communications links to support these people. They may not be "Londoners" in the sense of living in London, but they certainly add the metropolitan composition.
 

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@rational plan. really great maps and so useful...I grew up at the western edge of Surrey, there was no local industry really ( might have changed ), Everyone caught the train into waterloo for work...but i cant imagine the people in Surrey being described as Londoners : )
So London population is 8174000, urban 8278000, metro is 13700000 as on wiki. Do most people agree with that?
Urban and metro figures are old I think, based from the 2001 census. Guessing around 9.4 and 15.2 now.
 

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You don't notice sometimes, because some areas are the homes of the super rich and each plot is an acre or two and all you see is fenced off woodland with an occasional secure gateway. Every so often the density increases and the house begin to emerge from the trees and suddenly you are in a small stretch of high street with a waitrose and then the tress are back again.
One of my Uni friends lives out here. Huge house, double garage with flat above for visitors, massive pool, field, big garden etc.

I wish I had that when I was growing up!! At least he is a decent guy though, not up his own arse about it in the slightest. And I say I wish I had that, but would I have had the close relationship with my neighbours growing up there?
 

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@rational plan. really great maps and so useful...I grew up at the western edge of Surrey, there was no local industry really ( might have changed ), Everyone caught the train into waterloo for work...but i cant imagine the people in Surrey being described as Londoners : )
So London population is 8174000, urban 8278000, metro is 13700000 as on wiki. Do most people agree with that?
Don't agree with that. Very conservative figure.

- The population of London and the Home Counties (in red) alone is 17 million.

The population of London, the Home Counties and counties that would partially constitute the metropolitan region (Oxfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hampshire in blue) is 21 million.

As wikipedia states:

London commuter belt

...

The commuter belt currently covers much of the South East region and part of the East of England region, including the Home Counties of Kent, Surrey, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Essex and Sussex. The population of Greater London and those counties adjacent to the green belt was 18,868,800 in 2011.
So whatever the metro population is, surely its more than the conservative 13.7m figure.





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Continuous built London within the metropolitan region: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/gawc/rb/images/rb307f2.jpg


Commuting patterns between its centres: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/gawc/rb/images/rb307f4.jpg
 

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It's the same old issue, metropolitan areas are subjective measurements because there is no consensus on what constitutes a town/district belonging - or being integrated - into a core city, so we get wildly different stats from different areas. Some stats for Milan put it above 7 million for example, way higher than Eurostat and local agencies.

Even on commuter flow patters there is no general agreement on what level is acceptable. Is it 15% of a town's workforce commuting to the core city that equates it belonging to city's metro area, or is it 25%? Oxford and Cambridge have two of the busiest lines into London yet I doubt more than 12-14% of locals work in London given they're large and economically powerful towns (and of course some of those commuting could be from ‘burbs and villages of those towns). Small settlements are always going to have a relatively larger outflow of workers, hence why US cities (esp. in the SW) seem to have enormous metro areas by size, many suburbs are little more than residential drives coming off a strip. Compare that to the active towns in Europe and elsewhere, even though you could argue they’re just as integrated if we consider many factors.
 

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Looking at google's satellite maps it seems there is a large urban area at the eastern, western, northern and southern extremities of London's metropolitan area (im just looking at google maps so im just roughly estimating the area as corresponding to nearly continuous urbanity).

The Northern extremity has Luton

The Southern extremity has Crawley

The Western extremity has Reading

The east has two large urban areas on it's extremities because of the Thames. These being Southend in Essex and the Medway towns in Kent.
 

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@rational plan. really great maps and so useful...I grew up at the western edge of Surrey, there was no local industry really ( might have changed ), Everyone caught the train into waterloo for work...but i cant imagine the people in Surrey being described as Londoners : )
So London population is 8174000, urban 8278000, metro is 13700000 as on wiki. Do most people agree with that?
I think the figures will be different
 
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