Swaythling ward is situated towards the north of Southampton and has a population of 13,900. Neighbouring wards are Bitterne Park, Portswood and Bassett. It is one of the two northern gateways into Southampton, just south of Southampton Airport and is bisected by the railway line. Shops are sparse on the spacious housing estate which is bordered by Thomas Lewis Way - a major north-south trunk road linking Southampton with Eastleigh. Also running through Swaythling and Mansbridge is the Itchen Navigation Channel which links Southampton with the north.