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Salford lies at the heart of the City of Salford, a metropolitan borough of Greater Manchester, in North West England. Salford is sited in a meander of the River Irwell, which forms its boundary with the city of Manchester to the east. Together with its neighbouring towns to the west, Salford forms the local government district of the City of Salford, which is administered from Swinton. The former Borough of Salford, which included Broughton, Pendleton and Kersal, was granted honorific city status in 1926; it has a resident population of 72,750 and occupies an area of 8.1 square miles. The wider City of Salford district has a population of 219,200. Historically a part of Lancashire, Salford's early history is marked by its status as a Royal caput and the judicial seat of the ancient hundred of Salfordshire, to which it lent its name. It was granted a charter by Ranulf de Blondeville, 6th Earl of Chester, in about 1230, making Salford a free borough. During the early stages of its growth, Salford was of greater cultural and commercial importance than its neighbour Manchester, although most contemporary sources agree that since the Industrial Revolution of the late 18th and early 19th centuries that position has been reversed. (via Freebase)