Divisions and environs
The area under the control of the county council, or shire county, is divided into a number of local government districts: Craven, Hambleton, Harrogate, Richmondshire, Ryedale, Scarborough and Selby.
The Department for Communities and Local Government considered reorganising North Yorkshire County Council's administrative structure by abolishing the seven district councils and the county council to create a North Yorkshire unitary authority. The changes were planned to be implemented no later than 1 April 2009. This was rejected on 25 July 2007 so the County Council and District Council structure will remain.
The largest settlement in the administrative county is Harrogate, the second largest is Scarborough. Within the ceremonial county, the largest is the Middlesbrough built-up area. York is the most populous district in the ceremonial county.
York, Middlesbrough and Redcar and Cleveland are unitary authority boroughs which form part of the ceremonial county for various functions such as the Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire, but do not come under county council control. Uniquely for a district in England, Stockton-on-Tees is split between North Yorkshire and County Durham for this purpose. Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees, and Redcar and Cleveland boroughs form part of the North East England region.
The ceremonial county area, including the unitary authorities, borders East Riding of Yorkshire to the east/south east, South Yorkshire to the south, West Yorkshire to the west/south west, Lancashire to the west, Cumbria to the north west and County Durham to the north, with the North Sea to the east.