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Powys is a county in Mid Wales, UK. The county is landlocked and is bordered to the north west by the county of Gwynedd; to the north by Denbighshire and Wrexham; to the east by the English counties of Herefordshire and Shropshire; to the south by Monmouthshire, the South Wales Valleys and Neath Port Talbot; and to the west by the counties of Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire. Powys is the largest county in Wales and has an area of 2006 square miles ( 5196 kmē) with a population of 132,000. The main geographical features of the county are the Cambrian Mountains; the Berwyn Mountains; Brecon Beacons; Black Mountains; and the Valley of the River Severn. The principal towns include Llanfyllin, Welshpool, Montgomery, Newtown, Machynlleth, Llanidloes, Rhayader, Knighton, Llandrindod Wells, Llanwrtyd Wells,Llangammarch Wells, Builth Wells, Sennybridge, Brecon, Hay-on-Wye, Crickhowell, and Ystradgynlais. The housing stock of Powys has a more rural feel to it than the industrial areas of south Wales. Indeed the largest town in the county, Newtown, has a population under 13,000. Expect to find more traditional Welsh stone cottages in the most rural of districts, with newer housing estates and suburban districts in the larger towns. Being such a large county, stretching from the English border in the east to very nearly Cardigan Bay in the west, it is no surprise that there is a great diversity in the use of the Welsh language. The percentage of Welsh speakers averages out at only 21% of the population, however in many areas the language would be spoken by a much higher percentage of the community and indeed would be the first tongue for many areas of the county.
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