Bournemouth is a large coastal resort town on the south coast of England. According to the 2011 census, the town had a population of 183,491. With Poole to the west and Christchurch in the east, Bournemouth now forms the South East Dorset conurbation with a total population of over 400,000. Until 1974 Bournemouth and Christchurch were in Hampshire. In Hampshire Bournemouth had been a municipal borough and county borough since 1894. In 1997, the town was made a unitary authority, giving it autonomy from Dorset County Council. It does, bowever, remain part of the ceremonial county. The local council is Bournemouth Borough Council.
Before it was founded in 1810 by Lewis Tregonwell, the area was a deserted heathland occasionally visited by fisherman and smugglers. Initially marketed as a health resort, the town received a boost when it appeared in Dr Granville's book, The Spas of England. Bournemouth's growth really accelerated with the arrival of the railway and it became a recognised town in 1870.
The town centre has notable Victorian architecture and the spire of St Peter's Church, one of three Grade I listed churches in the borough, is a local landmark. Bournemouth's location has made it a popular destination for tourists, attracting over five million visitors annually with its beaches and popular nightlife. The town is also a regional centre of business.
For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Bournemouth.