Dover is a major channel port in the English county of Kent. At the 2001 census, the town of Dover proper had a population of 28,156 inhabitants, while the population of the whole urban area of Dover, as calculated by the Office for National Statistics, was 39,078 inhabitants. (External reference: ). The town is the administrative centre of the Dover district.
Dover is famous for its white cliffs, which are made of chalk. The cliffs gave Britain its nickname of Albion, meaning "white". The town's name derives from the Brythonic Dubrās ("the waters"). The French name of Dover is Douvres, pronounced [duvʀ].
Its closeness to continental Europe – it is only 34 kilometres (21 miles) from the French port of Calais – makes Dover one of the United Kingdom's busiest cross-Channel ports, with 18 million passengers passing through each year. Regular ferry services operate from Dover to Calais and Dunkerque. A regular catamaran service to Boulogne recommenced in May 2004. Catamaran services provided by Hoverspeed to Ostend were withdrawn in 2003, and to Calais on 7 November 2005. Hoverspeed had previously operated hovercraft services to and from Calais and Boulogne for many years.
Dover is represented in Parliament by the Labour MP Gwyn Prosser.
Maxton was once a rural parish to the west of Dover, and the terminus of the tramway system serving the town until its closure in 1938. It is now a suburb of the town.
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