About Newport


Standing on the banks of the River Usk, Newport is the third most populous city in Wales (population 140,200) and the largest urban area in the historic county of Monmouthshire.

The settlement initially grew on Stow Hill around the original Newport Castle, a Norman motte and bailey castle which is no longer visible. The city's Welsh language name 'Casnewydd' (meaning 'New Castle') arose from a replacement (and short-lived) 14th century castle, the ruins of which can still be seen on the bank of the River Usk.

By the early 16th century Newport had an established harbour, and trade was thriving with the nearby ports of Bristol and Bridgewater. Industries included leather tanning, soap making and starch making, and the town's craftsmen included bakers, butchers, brewers, carpenters and blacksmiths.

As the Industrial Revolution took off in Britain in the 19th century, Newport Docks grew rapidly as a result of coal exports from Newport, and the city became the focal point for the new industrial eastern valleys of South Wales. By 1830 Newport was Wales' leading coal port, and until the 1850s was bigger than Cardiff.

The late 19th and early 20th century saw a boom for Newport, which had a rapidly expanding population and substantial international trade. In 1889 the Miners' Federation of Great Britain was founded in the city.

These days the Severn Bridge and M4 motorway ensure that Newport is one of the best-connected places in Wales, and since the 1980s the city has been established as a hotspot for technology companies.

Two notable Newport attractions are St Woolos Cathedral and the Newport Transporter Bridge. The latter, built across the River Usk in 1906, is widely considered the most recognisable symbol of Newport. It is the largest of the eight of its kind remaining worldwide, and is the oldest of its type in Britain.