Residents of Cumbrian town 'clinging on' to historic Yorkshire postal address

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A campaign to bring back old county names has found that residents of a picturesque town in Cumbria are still 'clinging' to their Yorkshire status.

The British Counties Campaign commissioned a YouGov poll which revealed that over 45 per cent of people still use county names that have since become obsolete and replaced by modern postal districts.

One example was the fell town of Sedbergh, which sits on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Historically, it was the most northern point of the old West Riding, but became part of Cumbria for administrative purposes following a major shake-up of local government in the 1970s.

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Yet Sedbergh residents are still likely to use their former county when writing out their postal address, along with those living in Newcastle, who prefer Northumberland to Tyne and Wear, and Birmingham, who favour Warwickshire over West Midlands.

The study also found that support for bringing back former county names is strongest in the over-45 age group - 53 per cent were in favour of the idea.

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A group of MPs have even thrown their weight behind the campaign to change the law so that some areas would revert back to their county status. Only the UK's 92 historic counties would be included. More modern local authorities would be referred to as 'council areas' rather than counties.

The campaign say they are keen to encourage people who are 'clinging on' to their past identity. One of the backers, Conservative MP Henry Smith, even pointed out that some English counties are older than the unified concept of England itself.

Sedbergh is a popular tourist destination renowned for its outdoor activities, fell landscape, independent literary scene and a public school which has produced numerous international rugby players.