Dudley (i/ˈdʌdli/ DUD-lee) is a large town in the West Midlands county of England, and the administrative and financial centre of the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley. At the 2001 census (according to the Office for National Statistics), the Dudley Urban Sub-Area had a population of 194,919, with the wider metropolitan borough having an estimated population of 312,900 as of the 2011 census, making it one of the most populous districts in England, the second largest town in the United Kingdom behind Reading, and the largest UK borough without its own university.
Dudley is part of the West Midlands conurbation, and is located 6 miles south of the city of Wolverhampton and 8 miles north west of the city of Birmingham. It is the largest town in the Black Country region of England, and for many years the town (but not the castle, which was outside the boundary in Staffordshire) formed part of an exclave of the county of Worcestershire. Despite the more recent changes in county borders, the town still remains part of the Anglican Diocese of Worcester.
Dudley Metropolitan Borough unsuccessfully bid to receive city status in 2012, losing out to Chelmsford, Perth, and St. Asaph.