The North East is one of the nine regions of England that are classified at the first level of NUTS for statistical purposes. It covers Northumberland, County Durham, Tyne and Wear, and the Tees Valley. The region is home to three large conurbations: Teesside, Wearside, and Tyneside, the latter of which is the largest of the three and the eighth most populous conurbation in the United Kingdom.
There are only three cities in the region; Newcastle upon Tyne is the largest city in the region with a population of just under 280,000 followed by Sunderland, both of which are located in the metropolitan county of Tyne and Wear. The city of Durham is the county town of County Durham. Other large settlements in the region include Darlington; Gateshead; Hartlepool; Middlesbrough; Redcar; South Shields and Stockton-on-Tees.