St Helens is a large town located in Merseyside, England, with a population of 102,629. It is the centre of administrative of the Metropolitan Borough of St Helens, which had a population of 176,843 at the 2001 Census.
St Helens is build in the south west of the historic county of Lancashire, 6 miles (10 km) north of the River Mersey. The town historically is situated in the ancient Lancashire division of West Derby which is known as a “hundred”. The town initially started as a small settlement in the township of Windle but by the mid of 1700s the town had become synonymous with a wider area, and by 1838 was formally made responsible for the administration of the four townships of Parr, Eccleston, Sutton and Windle. In 1868 the town was created by incorporation as a municipal borough and later became a county borough in 1887 and a metropolitan borough in 1974 also with an expanded administrative that are responsibility for smaller towns and villages in close proximity.
The area grow quickly in the Industrial Revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries into a significant centre for coal mining and glassmaking. It was also home to a cotton and linen industry (notably sail making) that lasted until the mid-19th century as well as salt, lime and alkali pits, brewing and copper smelting.
The Glass producer Pilkington is the town’s only remaining large industrial employer. Previously it was home to Beechams, the Gamble Alkali Works, Ravenhead glass, United Glass Bottles, Triplex, Daglish Foundry, and Greenall’s brewery.