North Yorkshire is the largest non-metropolitan county and lieutenancy area in England, covering an area of 8,654 square kilometres (3,341 sq mi). Around 40% of the county is covered by national parks, including most of the Yorkshire Dales and the North York Moors. It is one of four counties in England to hold the name Yorkshire; the three other counties are the East Riding of Yorkshire, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire.

North Yorkshire was formed on 1 April 1974 as a result of the Local Government Act 1972, and covers most of the lands of the historic North Riding, as well as the northern parts of the West Riding as well as northern and eastern East Riding and the former county borough of York.

York became a unitary authority independent of county authority on 1 April 1996. Middlesbrough, Redcar and Cleveland and Stockton borough south of the River Tees also became part of the county; these were part of Cleveland (county) for twenty two years from 1974 to 1996, and previously in the North Riding before that.

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