The largest settlement in Dorset, Bournemouth, is a scenic coastal resort town in the Borough of Bournemouth in Dorset, England. Founded in 1810 by Lewis Tregonwell, Bournemouth's population grew with the arrival of the railway, becoming a recognised town in 1870. Originally part of Hampshire, it joined Dorset with the reorganisation of local government in 1974. Since 1997 the town has been administered by a unitary authority, meaning that it has autonomy from Dorset County Council. Bournemouth's award winning Central Gardens is a separate major public park, running for several miles down the valley of the River Bourne through the centre of the town to the sea. It has a thriving youth culture, including a high university population and many language school students. With the introduction of the Boscombe Overstrand, an exciting new business culture revolving around new media and surfing is beginning to thrive.
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