80.41% White British 2.25% White Irish 0.18% Gypsy or Irish Traveller 2.87% Other White 1.17% White and Black Caribbean 0.29% White and Black African 0.68% White and Asian 0.52% Other mixed 2.75% Indian 3.10% Pakistani 0.20% Bangladeshi 0.98% Chinese 0.86% Other Asian 0.79% Black African 1.67% Black Caribbean 0.41% Other Black 0.55% Arab 0.41% Other ethnicity
The choice of the name Trafford for the borough was a "compromise between Altrincham, Stretford and Sale", and "seemed to have wide support". A Liberal councillor for the Municipal Borough of Sale suggested "Crossford ... whilst "Watlingford" was suggested by councillors in Hale, after the supposed name of an ancient Roman road in the district. Those names were rejected in favour of Trafford, because of the district's "famous sports venue, a major employer as well as historic associations", referring to Old Trafford (cricket and football), Trafford Park and the de Trafford baronets respectively.
As a place name, Trafford is an Anglo-French version of Stratford, deriving from the Old English words stræt (a street, more specifically a Roman road) and ford (a river crossing). The Metropolitan Borough of Trafford has existed since 1974, but the area it covers has a long history. Neolithic arrowheads have been discovered in Altrincham and Sale, and there is evidence of Bronze Age habitation in Timperley. Fragments of Roman pottery have been found in Urmston, and Roman coins have been found in Sale. The Roman road between the legionaryfortresses at Chester (Deva Victrix) and York (Eboracum) crosses Trafford, passing through Stretford, Sale, and Altrincham. The settlements in Trafford have been based largely around agriculture, although Altrincham was founded as a market town in the mid 13th century. Although the Industrial Revolution affected Trafford, the area did not experience the same rate of growth as the rest of Greater Manchester. A 100% increase in population in the Trafford area between 1841 and 1861 was a direct result of an influx due to the construction of the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway, which allowed residents to commute more easily from Trafford into Manchester. The area developed its own centres of industry in Broadheath (founded in 1885) and Trafford Park (founded in 1897). They have since declined, although Trafford Park still employs 40–50,000 people. Today, Trafford is mostly a commuter area. The borough was formed on 1 April 1974 by the Local Government Act 1972 as one of the ten metropolitan districts of Greater Manchester.