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new town in Welwyn Hatfield district, administrative and historic county of Hertfordshire, England, on the northern periphery of London. It was founded in 1920 by Sir Ebenezer Howard as a planned town to provide for both industry and pleasant living conditions. Across a main railway line a large concentration of light industrial factories has developed, but many of the inhabitants commute daily to London, which is 23 miles (37 km) away. After World War II Welwyn was designated and administered as a new town and grew rapidly. Pop. (2001) Welwyn Garden City, 43,512.