Swale shown within Kent
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Region||South East England|
|Incorporated||1 April 1974|
|• Type||Non-metropolitan district council|
|• Body||Swale Borough Council|
|• Leadership||Leader & Cabinet (Conservative)|
|• MPs||Hugh Robertson
|• Total||144.2 sq mi (373.4 km2)|
|Area rank||110th (of 326)|
|Population (2011 est.)|
|• Rank||149th (of 326)|
|• Density||950/sq mi (370/km2)|
|• Ethnicity1||96.1% White
1.0% Mixed Race
|Time zone||GMT (UTC0)|
|• Summer (DST)||BST (UTC+1)|
|ONS code||29UM (ONS)
|OS grid reference||TQ9018863720|
Swale is a local government district with borough status in Kent, England. Its council is based in Sittingbourne. The district is named after the narrow channel called The Swale, a channel that separates the mainland of Kent from the Isle of Sheppey, and which occupies the central part of the district.
The Roman Watling Street passed through the area, as witness the straightness of the A2 main road, now by-passed by the M2 motorway. Apart from the northern coast of the Isle of Sheppey, and the town of Sittingbourne, it is a mainly rural borough, containing a high proportion of the UK's apple, pear, cherry and plum orchards (the North Kent Fruit Belt), as well as many of its remaining hop gardens. Most of the southern half of the Borough lies within the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The district was formed in 1974 under the Local Government Act 1972, from the Borough of Faversham; the Borough of Queenborough-in-Sheppey, which covered the whole of Sheppey; the Sittingbourne and Milton Urban District; and Swale Rural District.
The district contains the following civil parishes: