Humberside's borders included Lincolnshire to the south,
North Yorkshire to the north and west and South Yorkshire and Nottingham to the
south-west. On the east the county is bounded by the North Sea.
On the 1st April 1996 Humberside was abolished and four
unitary authorities created, Kingston-upon-Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire,
North East Lincolnshire and North Lincolnshire. The title has however continued
in use as a regional term and in the names of institutions such as Humberside
Police and Humberside Fire Service. Prior to the creation of the county,
'Humberside' was used as an informal name to describe the areas surrounding the
By the twentieth century the industrial development of both
sides of the Humber Estuary was becoming increasingly integrated and
"Humberside" was being widely applied to the ports of Hull, Grimsby
and Goole and their hinterland. One reason for the desire to unify the two
sides of the river was to encourage the construction of a suspension bridge
between the two shores.
Humberside was first used as an official term in 1964 when
the planning region of Yorkshire and Humberside was created consisting of the
East and West Ridings of Yorkshire and parts of Lindsey from Lincolnshire. The
Humberside name was used to actively market the area from then on. In 1971 the
newly-launched local BBC radio station was named Radio Humberside. Humberside
County Council held a competition to design a coat of arms for the new county.
Mr E H Cook held the winning design and the arms were granted on 28th July 1976
by the College of Arms.
The name Humberside was not well received, and to quote
James Cran (MP for Beverley) "almost the day after the decision was
announced, a campaign began to have Humberside abolished"! Beverley
Borough Council formally included 'East Yorkshire' in its title and North Wolds
Borough Council changed its name to East Yorkshire Borough Council in likely
attempts to emphasise this. According to Cran there was a campaign in 1987 to
get Humberside County Council to change its name to something like 'East
Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire'. Michael Brown the Conservative MP for Brigg
and Cleethorpes, was particularly vociferous in support, saying 'I want to see
the word "Humberside" expunged from the English language' regarding
the abolition debate.
Despite the abolition of the county, the term 'Humberside'
has not fallen out of use as a general geographic designation. There is still a
Humberside Police, a Humberside Airport (roughly halfway between Scunthorpe and
Grimsby), a Humberside Fire Service and BBC Radio Humberside.