East Ayrshire

Stretching northwards from Loch Doon in the Southern Uplands to Cunninghame in the the Central Lowlands, Easy Ayrshire became a separate Local Government Area in 1996. Between 1975 and 1996 it formed the districts of Kilmarnock and Loudon and Cumnock and Doon Valley in Strathclyde Region. Watered by the Irvine, Annick, Cessnock, Afton and Doon, it is bounded by Dumfries and Galloway, East Renfrewshire, North Ayrshire, South Ayrshire and South Lanarkshire and its principal towns are Kilmarnock (administrative centre), Cumnock, New Cumnock, Mauchline, Stewarton, Galston, Newmilns, Darvel, Auchinleck and Dalmellington. East Ayrshire has a total area of 1252 sq. km (483 sq. miles), nearly 70 per cent being devoted to agriculture and largely given over to dairy farming and the production of beef and sheep. Many of the settlements developed during the 19th century in association with coal mining and the manufacture of textiles.

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