The City of Sunderland is a metropolitan borough in Tyne and Wear, in North East England. Since 1992 it has had the status of a city and metropolitan borough.
It is named after its largest settlement, Sunderland, but covers a far larger area which includes the towns of Washington, Houghton-le-Spring, and other smaller settlements.
The district was created in 1974 as the Metropolitan Borough of Sunderland when all local government in England and Wales was changed by the Local Government Act 1972. This was when four different local government districts from County Durham were joined together.
Sunderland became a city in 1992, the 40th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth's accession (the time she became queen).
The district had a population of 280,807 at the time of the 2001 census.
On March 24, 2004, the City adopted St Benedict Biscop as its patron saint. A patron had never been adopted before.