A linear pattern (a settlement along a line) usually develops due to the growth of the town being restricted by mountains, hills, valleys or rivers. Linear settlements are also found along roads.
A famous linear settlement, which expanded throughout the Industrial Revolution, is the Rhondda Valley in south Wales.
The steep sides of the valley have limited the growth of the town to the flat valley floor. On the diagram we can also see the main road following this path. Click here to see an Ordnance Survey graphic.