Burnley (/ˈbɜːrnli/) is a town in Lancashire, England, with a 2001 population of 73,021.[1] It is 21 miles (34 km) north of Manchester and 20 miles (32 km) east of Preston, at the confluence of the River Calder and River Brun.


Clockwise from top left: Burnley Town Hall; St Peter's Church; Belle Vue Mill; View of eastern Burnley and the Pendle Forest area; St James's Street in the town centre
Location within Burnley Borough
Location of town centre within Burnley
Location within Lancashire
Area15.82 km2 (6.11 sq mi) [1]
Population73,021 (2001 Census)
 Density11,171/sq mi (4,313/km2)
OS grid referenceSD836326
 London181 mi (291 km) SSE
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townBURNLEY
Postcode districtBB10-BB12
Dialling code01282
AmbulanceNorth West
UK Parliament
List of places
53.789°N 2.248°W / 53.789; -2.248

The town is located near the countryside to the south and east, with the towns of Padiham and Brierfield to the west and north respectively. It has a reputation as a regional centre of excellence for the manufacturing and aerospace industries.

The town began to develop in the early medieval period as a number of farming hamlets surrounded by manor houses and royal forests, and has held a market for more than 700 years. During the Industrial Revolution it became one of Lancashire's most prominent mill towns; at its peak, it was one of the world's largest producers of cotton cloth and a major centre of engineering.

Burnley has retained a strong manufacturing sector, and has strong economic links with the cities of Manchester and Leeds, as well as neighbouring towns along the M65 corridor. In 2013, in recognition of its success, Burnley received an Enterprising Britain award from the UK Government, for being the "Most Enterprising Area in the UK".[2] For the first time in more than fifty years, a direct train service now operates between the town's Manchester Road railway station and Manchester's Victoria station, via the newly restored Todmorden Curve, which opened in May 2015.