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England | Euro Palace Casino Blog

England | Euro Palace Casino Blog

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England has many outstanding landmarks and sites of interest. Listed below are nine of the most notable:. Don't confuse "England" with the the larger "Britain" or "United Kingdom"; see the United Kingdom article for details.

England has been stereotyped as being cold, grey and rainy since the ancient Romans wrote home, but this is not an entirely accurate picture.

Temperatures rarely get very cold or very hot, and while the country certainly gets rain, it's really not as wet as rumour has it.

London alone has lower annual rainfall than Paris, New York and Sydney, and it's not uncommon for parts of the country to go without rain for weeks.

Parts of southern England often have summer water restrictions due to a lack of adequate rainfall during the previous winter.

There is some scope for leaving your raincoat at home, but make sure you've got one. Northern and western parts are usually wetter than the rest of England due to the prevailing wind from the north west bringing down cold moist air from the North Atlantic, and the sunniest and warmest areas are in the far south and south east.

Winter and autumn are usually the wettest seasons where the weather is often very changeable and at times quite windy, especially in the north and west, where cold Arctic winds arrive.

Spring conditions are very changeable: Occasional snow even as late as May is not unheard of in northern England, but it will melt quickly.

Snow is particularly rare in the south east. Central Europe has very hot summers and very cold winters, but England is both less extreme surrounded by water and milder in the winter influenced by the warmth of the North Atlantic Drift.

If it were not for the North Atlantic Drift, England would be much much colder. Heavy, prolonged, snow is rare and temperatures are rarely below freezing for more than a few days.

Some years there will be a few days of road and rail disruption from snow - even the slightest amount of snow often causes delays on public transport, especially rail.

Very severe weather conditions are rare and remedial action is usually taken promptly. Flooding and droughts are unlikely to affect the traveller.

High winds occasionally disrupt travel, most often outside summer. English people are said to have a passion for debating the weather: Typically, these conversation openers are now heard only among the elderly members of society.

Most discussions that do involve weather usually include criticisms of it - including though perhaps not at the same time both that it's "too cold" and it's "too hot".

Well-known conversational gambits with due acknowledgement to Peter Kay: The people of England, like their language, are a mixed bunch who have regularly been infused with new blood - from the Romans nearly years ago taking control of the ancient British in the region, to the later influences of Angles, Saxons and others from Europe after which created the original idea of the English, to the Vikings and then the Normans about a thousand years ago.

Since then, there have been Hugenots, Chinese, Jews fleeing pogroms, people from former British colonies in the Caribbean in the s and 60s, Indians expelled from newly independent former African colonies, workers from new EU member states such as Poland, not to mention people from other UK nations and the Republic of Ireland.

The full list is very long, but England has long been used to outsiders making it their home - even before England existed! Like in any country you will get people who are unfriendly to foreign visitors, but England is noted as being one of the most tolerant countries in Europe, and racism is very low when comparing to other nations.

Almost everyone will treat you well if you are polite and make an effort to fit in. Smile, be polite, don't be pushy if you can help it: The English are well used to foreign tourists and you can expect them to be friendly and polite.

One thing to bear in mind is that many mostly elderly English people are terrified of giving offence and dislike lying, and so will try to avoid potential pitfalls by sticking to safe often boring topics of conversation and occasionally doing the tricky job of avoiding offence by evading a question which worries them, while also trying not to offend you by point blank refusing you an answer.

This sort of thing generally wears off as people get to know you. The younger generation are often quite different as far as giving offence is concerned.

Big cities and even some rural areas, like those anywhere, have their social problems, but England is predominantly an affluent country with little visible poverty.

Rough areas contain rough people in England as in any country: In tourist destinations you will meet a mostly friendly people who will take the time to answer a stranger's question, and who may speak English in a colourful or accented way but will be willing to standardise and simplify their speech if you're struggling.

Some would say there is a north-south divide, with people in the North more friendly and approachable Liverpool for instance was voted the fourth friendliest city in the world by travel magazine Rough Guide in , while the South mostly just London though is a more closed culture with people less willing to stop and speak, but don't take offence, remember most Londoners you see on the streets will usually be rushing to get to somewhere eg work and simply don't have the time to talk.

In rural areas of the south, particularly East Anglia and the West Country, people are generally much more laid back and enjoy taking the time to have a chat with strangers.

In most of England you will usually find that if you are polite and friendly, you'll get the same in return. London itself is a very international city where you may meet a variety of nationalities, depending on what part of the city you are in.

Unsurprisingly, English is the main language in England, though it is spoken with many different accents throughout the country.

Generally, English accents can be broadly divided into Northern and Southern accents, with natives of Liverpool having a very distinctive accent that is easily distinguishable from that of someone from neighbouring Manchester.

No other languages are widely spoken, but with widespread immigration to England in the past few decades, you might also hear other languages such as Polish, Chinese, German, various South Asian languages or even various African languages being spoken in their respective communities.

Cornish is spoken in Cornwall. When an English person says "Meet me at half five", they mean "Meet me at If the directions say "go to the top of the road", that means the end of the road.

Some words mean one thing to Americans and something else entirely to British folks. When an English man says he shared a "fag" with his "mate" that means only that he smoked a cigarette with a friend.

If he adds that they also had a "gorgeous" meal, it means it was followed by a nice dinner. If they had a "shag" it means they had sex afterwards.

See our English language varieties article for more insights. Then there are the words unique to British English; a sneaker or tennis shoe, for instance, is called a "trainer.

Moreover, the diverse history of the country, and the influx of various cultures over the centuries e. Vikings, Normans, Romans, Celtic peoples , have produced a very wide range of accents, and there are still traces of regional dialects vocabulary and grammar.

Best not to imitate the accents, you will be seen as mocking. An accent will usually reveal where someone was brought up — sometimes to within quite a small area a criminal was recently caught because his accent on a recorded phone call was traceable to a single neighbourhood.

Today, even well-educated professionals are happy to keep their regional accent: It is now only people who go to public i.

Differences in accent are very real: Even English people, familiar with other accents from TV or by knowing neighbours or colleagues who have moved from other areas, can still struggle when far from home.

Most people are happy to tone down or slow down their accent when a stranger is in difficulty. Dialects exist, but as a matter of interest, not confusion.

People across England would expect to understand anyone from anywhere else in England, because the few everyday dialect words are usually well known from TV.

Differences are interesting, but not critical. Some examples from the north of England: Real differences are of little consequence these days: Other common words are "wee", "bonnie", "lass" small, beautiful and girl, respectively in Scotland.

A few useful words which may help you understand the English particularly in the Midlands and North: Be prepared to have to use English to make yourself understood.

Few people here speak a second language fluently. However, most people were taught one second language usually French, German, Italian or Spanish at school, and may remember enough to be willing to help a stranger in difficulties if they can get over the embarrassment of being seen to "show off".

Because of immigration, especially from Commonwealth countries, many languages are spoken in the big cities. There are also smaller places where particular languages are common.

Because of links with Hong Kong, many Chinese people live here London and Manchester have thriving communities, and Liverpool has one of the oldest Chinese communities in Europe.

Another English peculiarity is the use of terms of endearment for strangers such as "darling", "pet", "love", "hun", "duck", "bab", "mate", "sweetheart", "flower", "queen" and a few others.

It can be confusing, or perhaps even embarrassing, for somebody who is not accustomed to this to be called "darling" by a total stranger; however, this is something which is nowadays mainly used by the older generation and found less in the younger generation although some younger males may call a woman "Darlin" this is usually either as a form of cat calling and can often be followed by derogatory demands or language but is often harmless or directed towards a female friend.

You will hear English people say "sorry". This is not down to guilt or self-consciousness but simply because it is synonymous with "excuse me", and is used to get somebody's attention.

Alternatively it can be synonymous with "pardon". Any comments along the lines of "What are you sorry about? Since England is on an island, it is not possible to drive directly into England from outside Great Britain.

Motorists have two choices to enter England from outside Great Britain, by various car ferry routes, or the Channel Tunnel.

A number of roads cross England's borders with its British neighbours. These roads range from the simple country lanes to motorways. There are no border controls with Scotland or Wales ; indeed, on smaller roads the border may not be noticed at all.

There are no tolls to cross into England; however, motorists need to be aware that crossing from England into Wales via the M4 and M48 Severn Bridges will need to pay a toll.

Also, there is a M6 toll road to bypass the congestion of Birmingham England's second largest city on the main M6 motorway.

Eurostar [25] links mainland Europe to England. Pancras Station in London. Occasional services run from other destinations in France.

Book as early as possible as fares can be considerably more expensive if trying to book at the last minute. BritRail Passes are also available to non-UK citizens which allow the traveller unlimited rail travel in England on one ticket.

Wikitravel has a guide to Rail travel in the United Kingdom. With so much coastline and so many ports, England has extensive shipping links with many countries worldwide.

See Ferry routes to British Mainland. This is highly recommended for a few reasons - firstly, the M5, the main route into the West Country is a dreary, slow, lethargic and often congested and frustrating road that is very easily prone to snarl ups - sitting on a hot summers day in a car stuck in traffic on the M5 is frustrating to say the least.

Secondly, the journey from Penarth to Ilfracombe on a warm summers day, you can get to see a sea-going perspective of Minehead , Porlock, the picture postcard villages of Lynton and Lynmouth, the wild and raw Valley of the Rocks and the majestic "Great Hangman", a feet hogback hill with a cliff face of feet making it the highest cliff in Southern England.

Sailing from Wales to the West Country is definetly better than driving down the awful M5!!! There are taxi firms everywhere many are by booking only - find the phone number of the local company and phone ahead , and every town has a bus service.

Sometimes in city centres, usually just after the nightclubs have closed, there will be queue for taxis which will sometimes be monitored by marshals or police.

To be safe, make sure you take a registered taxi or black cab; despite government action, many unlawful unregistered private taxi drivers exist - these do have a reputation for being unsafe, particularly if you are a woman.

England has one of the highest densities of railway lines per square mile in the world. There has been much improvement and investment in recent years to the railway network and rolling stock but delays and cancellations do occasionally occur.

See also Rail travel in the United Kingdom. Buses are numerous, frequent and reliable in most of the larger towns and cities and an ideal way of getting around.

Rural areas are less well served and hiring a car is often the best option to explore the countryside and villages.

The roads are of generally excellent quality although can deteriorate in rural areas, with cheap materials often used to repair the roads, only for the workmen and resulting road closures to rerun soon later.

Potholes are a huge nuisance to locals, as it can takes weeks or months for them to be repaired, although done cheaply using a method called "Patching".

Care should be taken on rural and minor roads, some of which are extremely narrow, twisty and poorly marked, while many are two way roads and only wide enough for one car, meaning a meeting situation can be unpleasant.

The signs and markings on most roads are clear, although roundabouts make traffic slow to a crawl during "Rush Hour". The main problem with driving in England is the sheer volume of traffic on the roads.

Unfortunately this is not only limited to rush-hours and large cities, and even cross country motorways can slow to a stop as they pass urban areas.

Prepare for travel times being longer than you'd normally anticipate in relation to the mileage. Speed cameras and traffic police are numerous so caution is advised.

The traditional British 'reserve' and politeness may occasionally dissolve under the stress of congestion on the major routes, especially with the traffic problems in some of England's larger cities, but generally driving around Britain is an enjoyable experience and it is polite to acknowledge the courtesy of another driver with a nod or the raising of the hand as a form of thank you.

Drivers will often flash their headlights to indicate that you are clear to pull out, or otherwise to give way to you, and it is considered polite to say thank you by giving a wave or a quick flash of your headlights.

However, be prepared for drivers who do not agree with speed limits, especially newly created ones on roads where for example, the limit has been lowered from 60 to 30 after campaigns from locals.

Even if you are driving at the posted limit, there is a chance you will be overtaken and this will be more frequent if you have a sticker in your back window, implying you'll be sticking to it.

Drivers with this attitude often spend ages driving behind you, while driving close behind as a means to make you speed up, even if it means breaking the law.

Do not worry about this, maintain your speed, as they are most likely the sort who are already collecting speeding points on their license, while you are sensible and in the right.

Flashing your hazards ie, both indicators at the same time is only used as an indication of danger. Usually it's used to indicate the car's broken down or to warn other drivers that there's a hazard up ahead.

But flashing your hazards a couple of times is another way of saying Thank you. Brown and white road signs indicate nearby tourist attractions, and the blue i sign denotes Tourist Information.

The UK isn't as cycle-friendly as some other European countries, but it's still a great way to get around. You'll see a lot more from a bicycle, have the freedom to stop wherever you want, no parking headaches and once you've got the bicycle there is nothing to pay.

It is unquestionably the fastest way around London and other major cities - it does have it's dangers but it's well worth the risk.

There are many lovely cycle paths where you can avoid the traffic and soak in the cityscape or countryside. Rough examples of journey times at moderate speed: Buckingham Palace to Tower Bridge: A national online route planner can be found at Cycle Streets.

You must use lights if you plan to cycle after dark and can be fined by the police for failing to do so. A front white light and red rear light are required.

Flashing LED lights or bulb based bike lights both meet the legal requirements. A decent lock is also essential, particularly in the cities bicycle theft is a common problem.

Some of the London Underground trains and all London Overground accept cycles outside of peak hours. Local buses and trams don't accept bikes.

Translated by Forster, E. Retrieved 20 December A Geo East Project. Archived from the original on 5 March Tectonic and structural background".

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This gives some 70 million people who are deaf or hard of hearing around the world the opportunity to see a short summary of the matches in sign language after the final whistle.

Ivan Perisic pulls Croatia level with a neat finish in the second half. Kieran Trippier opens the scoring for England with a superb free-kick early in the first half.

What do you think? There was heartbreak for hosts Russia, whose fantastic World Cup journey came to an end but joy for Croatia and England, who secured their places in the semi-finals.

Harry Maguire gave the lead to England against Sweden in Samara. Dele doubled the advantage for England against Sweden in Samara. England advanced to the semi-finals following a win against Sweden at Samara Arena in Samara.

France and Belgium have booked their places. Who will join them? First, Sweden take on England before hosts Russia try to continue their fairytale run against Croatia.

Who will be the star performer?

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There are traditions linked to Glastonbury claiming an introduction through Joseph of Arimathea , while others claim through Lucius of Britain.

This period of Christianity was influenced by ancient Celtic culture in its sensibilities, polity, practices and theology.

Local "congregations" were centred in the monastic community and monastic leaders were more like chieftains, as peers, rather than in the more hierarchical system of the Roman-dominated church.

Roman military withdrawals left Britain open to invasion by pagan, seafaring warriors from north-western continental Europe, chiefly the Saxons, Angles , Jutes and Frisians who had long raided the coasts of the Roman province and began to settle, initially in the eastern part of the country.

Contemporary texts describing this period are extremely scarce, giving rise to its description as a Dark Age. The nature and progression of the Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain is consequently subject to considerable disagreement.

Roman-dominated Christianity had, in general, disappeared from the conquered territories, but was reintroduced by missionaries from Rome led by Augustine from onwards.

During the settlement period the lands ruled by the incomers seem to have been fragmented into numerous tribal territories, but by the 7th century, when substantial evidence of the situation again becomes available, these had coalesced into roughly a dozen kingdoms including Northumbria , Mercia , Wessex , East Anglia , Essex , Kent and Sussex.

Over the following centuries, this process of political consolidation continued. Later in that century escalating attacks by the Danes culminated in the conquest of the north and east of England, overthrowing the kingdoms of Northumbria, Mercia and East Anglia.

Wessex under Alfred the Great was left as the only surviving English kingdom, and under his successors, it steadily expanded at the expense of the kingdoms of the Danelaw.

A fresh wave of Scandinavian attacks from the late 10th century ended with the conquest of this united kingdom by Sweyn Forkbeard in and again by his son Cnut in , turning it into the centre of a short-lived North Sea Empire that also included Denmark and Norway.

However, the native royal dynasty was restored with the accession of Edward the Confessor in A dispute over the succession to Edward led to the Norman conquest of England in , accomplished by an army led by Duke William of Normandy.

Catholic monasticism flourished, providing philosophers, and the universities of Oxford and Cambridge were founded with royal patronage.

The Principality of Wales became a Plantagenet fief during the 13th century [52] and the Lordship of Ireland was given to the English monarchy by the Pope.

During the 14th century, the Plantagenets and the House of Valois both claimed to be legitimate claimants to the House of Capet and with it France; the two powers clashed in the Hundred Years' War.

During the Tudor period , the Renaissance reached England through Italian courtiers, who reintroduced artistic, educational and scholarly debate from classical antiquity.

Henry VIII broke from communion with the Catholic Church, over issues relating to his divorce, under the Acts of Supremacy in which proclaimed the monarch head of the Church of England.

In contrast with much of European Protestantism, the roots of the split were more political than theological. There were internal religious conflicts during the reigns of Henry's daughters, Mary I and Elizabeth I.

The former took the country back to Catholicism while the latter broke from it again, forcefully asserting the supremacy of Anglicanism.

Competing with Spain , the first English colony in the Americas was founded in by explorer Walter Raleigh in Virginia and named Roanoke. The Roanoke colony failed and is known as the lost colony after it was found abandoned on the return of the late-arriving supply ship.

During the Elizabethan period , England was at war with Spain. An armada sailed from Spain in as part of a wider plan to invade England and re-establish a Catholic monarchy.

The plan was thwarted by bad coordination, stormy weather and successful harrying attacks by an English fleet under Lord Howard of Effingham.

This failure did not end the threat: Spain launched two further armadas, in and , but both were driven back by storms.

The political structure of the island changed in , when the King of Scots , James VI , a kingdom which had been a long-time rival to English interests, inherited the throne of England as James I , thereby creating a personal union.

It has not only been ranked with Shakespeare 's works as the greatest masterpiece of literature in the English language but also was the standard version of the Bible read by most Protestant Christians for four hundred years until modern revisions were produced in the 20th century.

Based on conflicting political, religious and social positions, the English Civil War was fought between the supporters of Parliament and those of King Charles I , known colloquially as Roundheads and Cavaliers respectively.

This was an interwoven part of the wider multifaceted Wars of the Three Kingdoms , involving Scotland and Ireland. The Parliamentarians were victorious, Charles I was executed and the kingdom replaced by the Commonwealth.

Leader of the Parliament forces, Oliver Cromwell declared himself Lord Protector in ; a period of personal rule followed. After the Glorious Revolution of , it was constitutionally established that King and Parliament should rule together, though Parliament would have the real power.

This was established with the Bill of Rights in Among the statutes set down were that the law could only be made by Parliament and could not be suspended by the King, also that the King could not impose taxes or raise an army without the prior approval of Parliament.

In the Great Fire of London gutted the City of London but it was rebuilt shortly afterwards [70] with many significant buildings designed by Sir Christopher Wren.

In Parliament two factions had emerged — the Tories and Whigs. Some English people, especially in the north, were Jacobites and continued to support James and his sons.

After the parliaments of England and Scotland agreed, [71] the two countries joined in political union , to create the Kingdom of Great Britain in Under the newly formed Kingdom of Great Britain, output from the Royal Society and other English initiatives combined with the Scottish Enlightenment to create innovations in science and engineering, while the enormous growth in British overseas trade protected by the Royal Navy paved the way for the establishment of the British Empire.

Domestically it drove the Industrial Revolution , a period of profound change in the socioeconomic and cultural conditions of England, resulting in industrialised agriculture, manufacture, engineering and mining, as well as new and pioneering road, rail and water networks to facilitate their expansion and development.

During the Industrial Revolution, many workers moved from England's countryside to new and expanding urban industrial areas to work in factories, for instance at Birmingham and Manchester , dubbed "Workshop of the World" and "Warehouse City" respectively.

During the Napoleonic Wars , Napoleon planned to invade from the south-east. However this failed to manifest and the Napoleonic forces were defeated by the British at sea by Lord Nelson and on land by the Duke of Wellington.

The Napoleonic Wars fostered a concept of Britishness and a united national British people , shared with the Scots and Welsh.

London became the largest and most populous metropolitan area in the world during the Victorian era , and trade within the British Empire — as well as the standing of the British military and navy — was prestigious.

Developments in warfare technology saw many cities damaged by air-raids during the Blitz. Following the war, the British Empire experienced rapid decolonisation , and there was a speeding up of technological innovations; automobiles became the primary means of transport and Frank Whittle 's development of the jet engine led to wider air travel.

The UK's NHS provided publicly funded health care to all UK permanent residents free at the point of need, being paid for from general taxation.

Combined, these changes prompted the reform of local government in England in the midth century. Since the 20th century there has been significant population movement to England, mostly from other parts of the British Isles , but also from the Commonwealth , particularly the Indian subcontinent.

Since the late 20th century the administration of the United Kingdom has moved towards devolved governance in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

As part of the United Kingdom, the basic political system in England is a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary system. Today England is governed directly by the Parliament of the United Kingdom , although other countries of the United Kingdom have devolved governments.

In the United Kingdom general election, , the Conservative Party won seats the Speaker of the House not being counted as a Conservative , more than any other party, though not enough to achieve an overall majority.

As the United Kingdom is a member of the European Union, there are elections held regionally in England to decide who is sent as Members of the European Parliament.

Since devolution , in which other countries of the United Kingdom — Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland — each have their own devolved parliament or assemblies for local issues, there has been debate about how to counterbalance this in England.

Originally it was planned that various regions of England would be devolved, but following the proposal's rejection by the North East in a referendum, this has not been carried out.

One major issue is the West Lothian question , in which MPs from Scotland and Wales are able to vote on legislation affecting only England, while English MPs have no equivalent right to legislate on devolved matters.

The English law legal system, developed over the centuries, is the basis of common law [] legal systems used in most Commonwealth countries [] and the United States except Louisiana.

Despite now being part of the United Kingdom, the legal system of the Courts of England and Wales continued, under the Treaty of Union , as a separate legal system from the one used in Scotland.

The general essence of English law is that it is made by judges sitting in courts, applying their common sense and knowledge of legal precedent — stare decisis — to the facts before them.

It was created in after constitutional changes, taking over the judicial functions of the House of Lords. The subdivisions of England consist of up to four levels of subnational division controlled through a variety of types of administrative entities created for the purposes of local government.

The highest tier of local government were the nine regions of England: These were created in as Government Offices , used by the UK government to deliver a wide range of policies and programmes regionally, but there are no elected bodies at this level, except in London, and in the regional government offices were abolished.

After devolution began to take place in other parts of the United Kingdom it was planned that referendums for the regions of England would take place for their own elected regional assemblies as a counterweight.

London accepted in However, when the proposal was rejected by the northern England devolution referendums, in the North East, further referendums were cancelled.

Below the regional level, all of England is divided into 48 ceremonial counties. There are six metropolitan counties based on the most heavily urbanised areas, which do not have county councils.

Elsewhere, 27 non-metropolitan "shire" counties have a county council and are divided into districts, each with a district council. They are typically, though not always, found in more rural areas.

The remaining non-metropolitan counties are of a single district and usually correspond to large towns or sparsely populated counties; they are known as unitary authorities.

Greater London has a different system for local government, with 32 London boroughs , plus the City of London covering a small area at the core governed by the City of London Corporation.

Geographically England includes the central and southern two-thirds of the island of Great Britain, plus such offshore islands as the Isle of Wight and the Isles of Scilly.

It is bordered by two other countries of the United Kingdom: England is closer to the European continent than any other part of mainland Britain.

Most of England's landscape consists of low hills and plains, with upland and mountainous terrain in the north and west of the country. The northern uplands include the Pennines , a chain of uplands dividing east and west, the Lake District mountains in Cumbria, and the Cheviot Hills , straddling the border between England and Scotland.

The approximate dividing line between terrain types is often indicated by the Tees-Exe line. There are karst landscapes in calcite areas such as parts of Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

The Pennine landscape is high moorland in upland areas, indented by fertile valleys of the region's rivers.

They contain two national parks , the Yorkshire Dales and the Peak District. In the West Country , Dartmoor and Exmoor of the Southwest Peninsula include upland moorland supported by granite, and enjoy a mild climate ; both are national parks.

The English Lowlands are in the central and southern regions of the country, consisting of green rolling hills, including the Cotswold Hills , Chiltern Hills , North and South Downs ; where they meet the sea they form white rock exposures such as the cliffs of Dover.

England has a temperate maritime climate: The coldest months are January and February, the latter particularly on the English coast , while July is normally the warmest month.

Months with mild to warm weather are May, June, September and October. Important influences on the climate of England are its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean , its northern latitude and the warming of the sea by the Gulf Stream.

The Greater London Built-up Area is by far the largest urban area in England [] and one of the busiest cities in the world.

It is considered a global city and has a population larger than other countries in the United Kingdom besides England itself.

While many cities in England are quite large, such as Birmingham , Sheffield , Manchester, Liverpool , Leeds , Newcastle , Bradford , Nottingham , population size is not a prerequisite for city status.

England is a leader in the chemical [] and pharmaceutical sectors and in key technical industries, particularly aerospace , the arms industry , and the manufacturing side of the software industry.

Originally established as private banker to the government of England, since it has been a state-owned institution.

The government has devolved responsibility to the bank's Monetary Policy Committee for managing the monetary policy of the country and setting interest rates.

England is highly industrialised, but since the s there has been a decline in traditional heavy and manufacturing industries, and an increasing emphasis on a more service industry oriented economy.

The export part of the economy is dominated by pharmaceuticals , cars although many English marques are now foreign-owned, such as Land Rover , Lotus , Jaguar and Bentley , crude oil and petroleum from the English parts of North Sea oil along with Wytch Farm , aircraft engines and alcoholic beverages.

It is also a principal subcontractor on the F35 Joint Strike Fighter — the world's largest single defence project — for which it designs and manufactures a range of components including the aft fuselage, vertical and horizontal tail and wing tips and fuel system.

It also manufactures the Hawk , the world's most successful jet training aircraft. Rolls-Royce PLC is the world's second-largest aero-engine manufacturer.

Its engines power more than 30 types of commercial aircraft, and it has more 30, engines currently in service across both the civil and defence sectors.

With a workforce of over 12, people, Derby has the largest concentration of Rolls-Royce employees in the UK. Rolls-Royce also produces low-emission power systems for ships; makes critical equipment and safety systems for the nuclear industry and powers offshore platforms and major pipelines for the oil and gas industry.

The company builds the buses — the underlying structure onto which the payload and propulsion systems are built — for most of the European Space Agency 's spacecraft, as well as commercial satellites.

The world leader in compact satellite systems, Surrey Satellites , is also part of Astrium. Some experts claim that the earliest concept of a metric system was invented by John Wilkins , the first secretary of the Royal Society , in As the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution , England was home to many significant inventors during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

Famous English engineers include Isambard Kingdom Brunel , best known for the creation of the Great Western Railway , a series of famous steamships , and numerous important bridges, hence revolutionising public transport and modern-day engineering.

With his role in the marketing and manufacturing of the steam engine, and invention of modern coinage, Matthew Boulton business partner of James Watt is regarded as one of the most influential entrepreneurs in history.

Inventions and discoveries of the English include: Newton developed the ideas of universal gravitation , Newtonian mechanics , and calculus , and Robert Hooke his eponymously named law of elasticity.

Other inventions include the iron plate railway, the thermosiphon , tarmac , the rubber band , the mousetrap , "cat's eye" road marker , joint development of the light bulb , steam locomotives , the modern seed drill and many modern techniques and technologies used in precision engineering.

The Department for Transport is the government body responsible for overseeing transport in England. There are many motorways in England , and many other trunk roads, such as the A1 Great North Road , which runs through eastern England from London to Newcastle [] much of this section is motorway and onward to the Scottish border.

The red double-decker buses in London have become a symbol of England. There is a rapid transit network in two English cities: Rail transport in England is the oldest in the world: There are plans to reopen lines such as the Varsity Line between Oxford and Cambridge.

These lines are mostly standard gauge single , double or quadruple track though there are also a few narrow gauge lines. There is rail transport access to France and Belgium through an undersea rail link, the Channel Tunnel , which was completed in England has extensive domestic and international aviation links.

The largest airport is Heathrow , which is the world's busiest airport measured by number of international passengers.

The Thames is the major waterway in England, with imports and exports focused at the Port of Tilbury in the Thames Estuary, one of the United Kingdom's three major ports.

The National Health Service NHS is the publicly funded healthcare system in England responsible for providing the majority of healthcare in the country.

It was based on the findings of the Beveridge Report , prepared by economist and social reformer William Beveridge. The average life expectancy of people in England is The English people are a British people.

In , when the Domesday Book was compiled, England had a population of two million. Other people from much further afield in the former British colonies have arrived since the s: England contains one indigenous national minority, the Cornish people , recognised by the UK government under the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities in By the 15th century, English was back in fashion among all classes, though much changed; the Middle English form showed many signs of French influence, both in vocabulary and spelling.

During the English Renaissance , many words were coined from Latin and Greek origins. Thanks in large part to the British Empire , the English language is the world's unofficial lingua franca.

English language learning and teaching is an important economic activity , and includes language schooling , tourism spending, and publishing.

There is no legislation mandating an official language for England, [] but English is the only language used for official business. Despite the country's relatively small size, there are many distinct regional accents , and individuals with particularly strong accents may not be easily understood everywhere in the country.

As well as English, England has two other indigenous languages , Cornish and Welsh. Cornish died out as a community language in the 18th century but is being revived, [] [] and is now protected under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages.

When the modern border between Wales and England was established by the Laws in Wales Acts and , many Welsh-speaking communities found themselves on the English side of the border.

Welsh was spoken in Archenfield in Herefordshire into the nineteenth century, [] and by natives of parts of western Shropshire until the middle of the twentieth century if not later.

State schools teach students a second language , usually French, German or Spanish. However, following the census data released by the Office for National Statistics , figures now show that Polish is the main language spoken in England after English.

In the census, The church regards itself as both Catholic and Protestant. It forms part of the Anglican Communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury acting as its symbolic worldwide head.

Since its reintroduction after the Catholic Emancipation , the Church has organised ecclesiastically on an England and Wales basis where there are 4.

A form of Protestantism known as Methodism is the third largest Christian practice and grew out of Anglicanism through John Wesley.

The patron saint of England is Saint George ; his symbolic cross is included in the flag of England, as well as in the Union Flag as part of a combination.

There are non-Christian religions practised. Jews have a history of a small minority on the island since Especially since the s, religions from the former British colonies have grown in numbers, due to immigration.

A small minority of the population practise ancient Pagan religions. Neopaganism in the United Kingdom is primarily represented by Wicca and Witchcraft religions , Druidry , and Heathenry.

According to the UK Census , there are roughly 53, people who identify as Pagan in England, [nb 5] and 3, in Wales , [nb 5] including 11, Wiccans in England and in Wales.

The Department for Education is the government department responsible for issues affecting people in England up to the age of 19, including education.

Children who are between the ages of 3 and 5 attend nursery or an Early Years Foundation Stage reception unit within a primary school. Children between the ages of 5 and 11 attend primary school, and secondary school is attended by those aged between 11 and After finishing compulsory education, students take GCSE examinations.

Students may then opt to continue into further education for two years. Further education colleges particularly sixth form colleges often form part of a secondary school site.

A-level examinations are sat by a large number of further education students, and often form the basis of an application to university.

Although most English secondary schools are comprehensive , in some areas there are selective intake grammar schools , to which entrance is subject to passing the eleven-plus exam.

Higher education students normally attend university from age 18 onwards, where they study for an academic degree.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills is the government department responsible for higher education in England. Students are then able to work towards a postgraduate degree, which usually takes one year, or towards a doctorate, which takes three or more years.

Since the establishment of Bedford College London , Girton College Cambridge and Somerville College Oxford in the 19th century , women also can obtain a university degree.

Many ancient standing stone monuments were erected during the prehistoric period; amongst the best known are Stonehenge , Devil's Arrows , Rudston Monolith and Castlerigg.

Perhaps the best-known example is Hadrian's Wall stretching right across northern England. Early Medieval architecture's secular buildings were simple constructions mainly using timber with thatch for roofing.

Ecclesiastical architecture ranged from a synthesis of Hiberno — Saxon monasticism , [] [] to Early Christian basilica and architecture characterised by pilaster-strips, blank arcading, baluster shafts and triangular headed openings.

After the Norman conquest in various Castles in England were created so law lords could uphold their authority and in the north to protect from invasion.

Throughout the Plantagenet era, an English Gothic architecture flourished, with prime examples including the medieval cathedrals such as Canterbury Cathedral , Westminster Abbey and York Minster.

Medieval architecture was completed with the 16th-century Tudor style ; the four-centred arch, now known as the Tudor arch , was a defining feature as were wattle and daub houses domestically.

In the aftermath of the Renaissance a form of architecture echoing classical antiquity synthesised with Christianity appeared, the English Baroque style of architect Christopher Wren being particularly championed.

Georgian architecture followed in a more refined style, evoking a simple Palladian form; the Royal Crescent at Bath is one of the best examples of this.

With the emergence of romanticism during Victorian period, a Gothic Revival was launched. In addition to this, around the same time the Industrial Revolution paved the way for buildings such as The Crystal Palace.

Since the s various modernist forms have appeared whose reception is often controversial, though traditionalist resistance movements continue with support in influential places.

English folklore developed over many centuries. Some of the characters and stories are present across England, but most belong to specific regions.

Common folkloric beings include pixies , giants , elves , bogeymen , trolls , goblins and dwarves.

While many legends and folk-customs are thought to be ancient, for instance the tales featuring Offa of Angel and Wayland the Smith , [] others date from after the Norman invasion; Robin Hood and his Merry Men of Sherwood and their battles with the Sheriff of Nottingham being, perhaps, the best known.

During the High Middle Ages tales originating from Brythonic traditions entered English folklore and developed into the Arthurian myth. Many of the tales and pseudo-histories make up part of the wider Matter of Britain , a collection of shared British folklore.

Some folk figures are based on semi or actual historical people whose story has been passed down centuries; Lady Godiva for instance was said to have ridden naked on horseback through Coventry , Hereward the Wake was a heroic English figure resisting the Norman invasion, Herne the Hunter is an equestrian ghost associated with Windsor Forest and Great Park and Mother Shipton is the archetypal witch.

The chivalrous bandit, such as Dick Turpin , is a recurring character, while Blackbeard is the archetypal pirate. There are various national and regional folk activities, participated in to this day, such as Morris dancing , Maypole dancing , Rapper sword in the North East, Long Sword dance in Yorkshire, Mummers Plays , bottle-kicking in Leicestershire, and cheese-rolling at Cooper's Hill.

Since the early modern period the food of England has historically been characterised by its simplicity of approach and a reliance on the high quality of natural produce.

The cuisine of England has, however, recently undergone a revival, which has been recognised by food critics with some good ratings in Restaurant ' s best restaurant in the world charts.

Traditional examples of English food include the Sunday roast , featuring a roasted joint usually beef, lamb , chicken or pork served with assorted vegetables, Yorkshire pudding and gravy.

Sausages are commonly eaten, either as bangers and mash or toad in the hole. Lancashire hotpot is a well-known stew originating in the northwest.

Many Anglo-Indian hybrid dishes, curries , have been created, such as chicken tikka masala and balti. Traditional English dessert dishes include apple pie or other fruit pies; spotted dick — all generally served with custard ; and, more recently, sticky toffee pudding.

Common non-alcoholic drinks include tea, the popularity of which was increased by Catherine of Braganza , [] and coffee; frequently consumed alcoholic drinks include wine, ciders and English beers , such as bitter , mild , stout and brown ale.

The earliest known examples are the prehistoric rock and cave art pieces, most prominent in North Yorkshire , Northumberland and Cumbria , but also feature further south, for example at Creswell Crags.

There are numerous surviving artefacts, such as those at Lullingstone and Aldborough. The Tudor era saw prominent artists as part of their court, portrait painting which would remain an enduring part of English art, was boosted by German Hans Holbein , natives such as Nicholas Hilliard built on this.

Early authors such as Bede and Alcuin wrote in Latin. Marvell was the best-known poet of the Commonwealth , [] while John Milton authored Paradise Lost during the Restoration.

More radical elements were later countered by Edmund Burke who is regarded as the founder of conservatism. The English played a significant role in romanticism: In response to the Industrial Revolution , agrarian writers sought a way between liberty and tradition; William Cobbett , G.

Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc were main exponents, while the founder of guild socialism , Arthur Penty , and cooperative movement advocate G.

Cole are somewhat related. Wells and Lewis Carroll. Lawrence , Virginia Woolf , C. Tolkien , and J. The traditional folk music of England is centuries old and has contributed to several genres prominently; mostly sea shanties , jigs , hornpipes and dance music.

It has its own distinct variations and regional peculiarities. German-born George Frideric Handel became a British subject [] and spent most of his composing life in London, creating some of the most well-known works of classical music, The Messiah , Water Music , and Music for the Royal Fireworks.

One of his four Coronation Anthems , Zadok the Priest , composed for the coronation of George II , has been performed at every subsequent British coronation , traditionally during the sovereign's anointing.

In the field of popular music , many English bands and solo artists have been cited as the most influential and best-selling musicians of all time.

Large outdoor music festivals in the summer and autumn are popular, such as Glastonbury , V Festival , and the Reading and Leeds Festivals.

Hitchcock and Lean are among the most critically acclaimed filmmakers. A Story of the London Fog , helped shape the thriller genre in film, while his film, Blackmail , is often regarded as the first British sound feature film.

Major film studios in England include Pinewood , Elstree and Shepperton. Some of the most commercially successful films of all time have been produced in England, including two of the highest-grossing film franchises Harry Potter and James Bond.

English Heritage is a governmental body with a broad remit of managing the historic sites, artefacts and environments of England.

It is currently sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. There are many museums in England, but perhaps the most notable is London's British Museum.

Its collection of more than seven million objects [] is one of the largest and most comprehensive in the world, [] sourced from every continent, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its beginning to the present.

England has a strong sporting heritage, and during the 19th century codified many sports that are now played around the world. Sports originating in England include association football, [] cricket , rugby union , rugby league , tennis , boxing , badminton, squash , [] rounders , [] hockey , snooker , billiards , darts , table tennis, bowls , netball , thoroughbred horseracing, greyhound racing and fox hunting.

It has helped the development of golf , sailing and Formula One. Football is the most popular of these sports.

The England national football team , whose home venue is Wembley Stadium , played Scotland in the first ever international football match in In the modern day, the Premier League is the world's most-watched football league, [] most lucrative, [] and amongst the elite.

As is the case throughout the UK, football in England is notable for the rivalries between clubs and the passion of the supporters, which includes a tradition of football chants.

Cricket is generally thought to have been developed in the early medieval period among the farming and metalworking communities of the Weald. One of the game's top rivalries is The Ashes series between England and Australia , contested since The climax of the Ashes was viewed by 7.

However they have hosted the ICC World Twenty20 in , winning this format in beating rivals Australia in the final. William Penny Brookes was prominent in organising the format for the modern Olympic Games.

England competes in the Commonwealth Games , held every four years. Sport England is the governing body responsible for distributing funds and providing strategic guidance for sporting activity in England.

Rugby union originated in Rugby School , Warwickshire in the early 19th century. England was one of the host nations of the competition in the Rugby World Cup and also hosted the Rugby World Cup.

Rugby league was born in Huddersfield in Since , the England national rugby league team has been a full test nation in lieu of the Great Britain national rugby league team , which won three World Cups but is now retired.

Rugby League is most popular among towns in the northern English counties of Lancashire , Yorkshire and Cumbria.

Some of the most successful clubs include Wigan Warriors , Hull F. Golf has been prominent in England; due in part to its cultural and geographical ties to Scotland, the home of Golf.

England has produced grand slam winners: The world's oldest golf tournament, and golf's first major is The Open Championship , played both in England and Scotland.

The biennial golf competition, the Ryder Cup , is named after English businessman Samuel Ryder who sponsored the event and donated the trophy.

Tennis was created in Birmingham, England in the late 19th century, and the Wimbledon Championships is the oldest tennis tournament in the world, and widely considered the most prestigious.

Fred Perry was the last Englishman to win Wimbledon in He was the first player to win all four Grand Slam singles titles [] and helped lead the Great Britain team to four Davis Cup wins.

English women who have won Wimbledon include: Ann Haydon Jones in and Virginia Wade in In boxing , under the Marquess of Queensberry Rules , England has produced many world champions across the weight divisions internationally recognised by the governing bodies.

Originating in 17th and 18th-century England, the thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. It is the most watched horse race in the UK, attracting casual observers, and three-time winner Red Rum is the most successful racehorse in the event's history.

England also has a rich heritage in Grand Prix motorcycle racing , the premier championship of motorcycle road racing , and produced several World Champions across all the various class of motorcycle: Darts is a widely popular sport in England; a professional competitive sport, darts is a traditional pub game.

Phil Taylor is widely regarded as the best darts player of all time, having won professional tournaments, and a record 16 World Championships.

Another popular sport commonly associated with pub games is Snooker , and England has produced several world champions, including Steve Davis and Ronnie O'Sullivan.

The English are keen sailors and enjoy competitive sailing ; founding and winning some of the worlds most famous and respected international competitive tournaments across the various race formats, including the match race , a regatta, and the America's Cup.

The St George's Cross has been the national flag of England since the 13th century. Originally the flag was used by the maritime Republic of Genoa.

The English monarch paid a tribute to the Doge of Genoa from onwards so that English ships could fly the flag as a means of protection when entering the Mediterranean.

A red cross was a symbol for many Crusaders in the 12th and 13th centuries. It became associated with Saint George , along with countries and cities, which claimed him as their patron saint and used his cross as a banner.

There are numerous other symbols and symbolic artefacts, both official and unofficial, including the Tudor rose , the nation's floral emblem , and the Three Lions featured on the Royal Arms of England.

The Tudor rose was adopted as a national emblem of England around the time of the Wars of the Roses as a symbol of peace. It is also known as the Rose of England.

The Royal Arms of England, a national coat of arms featuring three lions, originated with its adoption by Richard the Lionheart in It is blazoned as gules, three lions passant guardant or and it provides one of the most prominent symbols of England; it is similar to the traditional arms of Normandy.

England does not have an official designated national anthem, as the United Kingdom as a whole has God Save the Queen.

However, the following are often considered unofficial English national anthems: St George is the patron saint of England. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

This article is about the country. For other uses, see England disambiguation. Sovereign state Legal jurisdiction. England in the Middle Ages.

East Riding of Yorkshire. Ceremonial counties of England. List of places in England. List of English inventions and discoveries and Royal Society.

English diaspora , Cornish people , and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom. English language in England. English language , History of the English language , and Cornish language.

Official, but not majority language. History of Christianity in England. List of universities in England. Fish and chips is a very popular dish in England.

Apple pie has been consumed in England since the Middle Ages. Chicken tikka masala , , adapted from Indian chicken tikka and called "a true British national dish.

This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle, this earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, this other Eden, demi-paradise; this fortress, built by nature for herself.

This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England. Folk music of England. Music of the United Kingdom. Thomas Tallis' "Lamentations I".

Cinema of the United Kingdom. List of museums in England. National symbols of England. England portal United Kingdom portal.

London's municipal population is also the largest in the EU. Other Pagan paths, such as Wicca or Druidism, have not been included in this number.

Other Pagan paths, such as Druidism, and general "Pagan" have not been included in this number. Scottish students attending Scottish universities have their fees paid by the devolved Scottish Parliament.

Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 18 April Retrieved 9 August Retrieved 24 April Archived from the original on 20 December Retrieved 1 February Archived from the original on 9 February International Organization for Standardization.

Archived from the original on 16 May Archived from the original on 27 April Accessed 31 May Retrieved 21 July Retrieved 12 July Retrieved 5 September The Principles of Gaelic Grammar.

Mammal species such as the bear, wolf, and beaver were exterminated in historic times, but others such as the fallow deer , rabbit, and rat have been introduced.

More recently birds of prey have suffered at the hands of farmers protecting their stock and their game birds.

The bird life is unusually varied, mainly because England lies along the route of bird migrations. Some birds have found town gardens, where they are often fed, to be a favourable environment , and in London about different species are recorded annually.

London also is a habitat conducive to foxes, which in small numbers have colonized woods and heaths within a short distance of the city centre. There are few kinds of reptiles and amphibians—about half a dozen species of each—but they are nearly all plentiful where conditions suit them.

Freshwater fish are numerous; the char and allied species of the lakes of Cumbria probably represent an ancient group, related to the trout, that migrated to the sea before the tectonic changes that formed these lakes cut off their outlet.

The marine fishes are abundant in species and in absolute numbers. The great diversity of shorelines produces habitats for numerous types of invertebrate animals.

The English language is polyglot, drawn from a variety of sources, and its vocabulary has been augmented by importations from throughout the world.

The English language does not identify the English, for it is the main language of Wales, Scotland, Ireland, many Commonwealth countries, and the United States.

The primary source of the language, however, is the main ethnic stem of the English: Their language provides the most commonly used words in the modern English vocabulary.

In the millennia following the last glacial period, the British Isles were peopled by migrant tribes from the continent of Europe and, later, by traders from the Mediterranean area.

During the Roman occupation England was inhabited by Celtic-speaking Brythons or Britons , but the Brythons yielded to the invading Teutonic Angles, Saxons, and Jutes from present northwestern Germany except in the mountainous areas of western and northern Great Britain.

The Anglo-Saxons preserved and absorbed little of the Roman-British culture they found in the 5th century. The history of England before the Norman Conquest is poorly documented, but what stands out is the tenacity of the Anglo-Saxons in surviving a succession of invasions.

They united most of what is now England from the 9th to the midth century, only to be overthrown by the Normans in For two centuries Norman French became the language of the court and the ruling nobility; yet English prevailed and by had reestablished itself as an official language.

Church Latin, as well as a residue of Norman French, was incorporated into the language during this period. It was subsequently enriched by the Latin and Greek of the educated scholars of the Renaissance.

The seafarers, explorers, and empire builders of modern history have imported foreign words, most copiously from Europe but also from Asia.

These words have been so completely absorbed into the language that they pass unselfconsciously as English. The English, it might be said, are great Anglicizers.

The English have also absorbed and Anglicized non-English peoples, from Scandinavian pillagers and Norman conquerors to Latin church leaders.

Among royalty, a Welsh dynasty of monarchs, the Tudors , was succeeded by the Scottish Stuarts , to be followed by the Dutch William of Orange and the German Hanoverians.

English became the main language for the Scots, Welsh, and Irish. England provided a haven for refugees from the time of the Huguenots in the 17th century to the totalitarian persecutions of the 20th century.

Many Jews have settled in England. Since World War II there has been large-scale immigration from Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean, posing seemingly more difficult problems of assimilation, and restrictive immigration regulations have been imposed that are out of step with the open-door policy that had been an English tradition for many generations.

Although the Church of England is formally established as the official church, with the monarch at its head, England is a highly secularized country.

The Church of England has some 13, parishes and a similar number of clergy, but it solemnizes fewer than one-third of marriages and baptizes only one in four babies.

The Nonconformist non-Anglican Protestant churches have nominally fewer members, but there is probably greater dedication among them, as with the Roman Catholic church.

There is virtually complete religious tolerance in England and no longer any overt prejudice against Catholics.

The decline in churchgoing has been thought to be an indicator of decline in religious belief, but opinion polls substantiate the view that belief in God and the central tenets of Christianity survives the flagging fortunes of the churches.

Some churches—most notably those associated with the Evangelical movement—have small but growing memberships. There are also large communities of Muslims, Jews, Sikhs, and Hindus.

The modern landscape of England has been so significantly changed by humans that there is virtually no genuine wilderness left. Only the remotest moorland and mountaintops have been untouched.

Even the bleak Pennine moors of the north are crisscrossed by dry stone walls, and their vegetation is modified by the cropping of mountain sheep.

The marks of centuries of exploitation and use dominate the contemporary landscape. The oldest traces are the antiquarian survivals, such as the Bronze Age forts studding the chalk downs of the southwest, and the corrugations left by the strip farming of medieval open fields.

More significant is the structure of towns and villages, which was established in Roman-British and Anglo-Saxon times and has persisted as the basic pattern.

The English live in scattered high-density groupings, whether in villages or towns or, in modern times, cities.

Although the latter sprawled into conurbations during the 19th and early 20th centuries without careful planning, the government has since limited the encroachment of urban development, and England retains extensive tracts of farming countryside between its towns, its smaller villages often engulfed in the vegetation of trees, copses, hedgerows, and fields: The visual impact of a mostly green and pleasant land can be seriously misleading.

England is primarily an industrial country, built up during the Industrial Revolution by exploitation of the coalfields and cheap labour, especially in the cotton-textile areas of Lancashire, the woolen-textile areas of Yorkshire, and the coal-mining, metalworking, and engineering centres of the Midlands and the North East.

England has large tracts of derelict areas, scarred by the spoil heaps of the coal mines, quarries and clay pits, abandoned industrial plants, and rundown slums.

One of the earliest initiatives to maintain the heritage of the past was the establishment in of the National Trust , a private organization dedicated to the preservation of historic places and natural beauty in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

There is a separate National Trust for Scotland. In the Civic Trust was established to promote interest in and action on issues of the urban environment.

Hundreds of local societies dedicated to the protection of the urban environment have been set up, and many other voluntary organizations as well as government agencies are working to protect and improve the English landscape.

Greenbelts have been mapped out for London and other conurbations. Fish have returned to rivers—such as the Thames, Tyne, and Tees—from which they had been driven by industrial pollution.

It was natural for different groups of the population to establish themselves in recognizable physical areas.

In the north, for example, the east and west are separated by the Pennines, and the estuaries of the Humber, Thames, and Severn rivers form natural barriers.

The eight traditional geographic regions—the South West, the South East Greater London often was separated out as its own region , the West Midlands, the East Midlands, East Anglia, the North West, Yorkshire, and the North East—often were referred to as the standard regions of England, though they never served administrative functions.

In the s the government redrew and renamed some regions and established government development agencies for each.

The South West contains the last Celtic stronghold in England, Cornwall , where a Celtic language was spoken until the 18th century.

There is even a small nationalist movement, Mebyon Kernow Sons of Cornwall , seeking to revive the old language. Although it has no political significance, the movement reflects the disenchantment of a declining area, with the exhaustion of mineral deposits toward the end of the 19th century.

Cornwall and the neighbouring county of Devon share a splendid coastline, and Dartmoor and Exmoor national parks are in this part of the region.

Farther east are the city of Bristol and the counties of Dorset , Gloucestershire , Somerset , and Wiltshire.

The South East, centred on London, has a population and wealth to match many nation-states. This is the dominant area of England and the most rapidly growing one, although planning controls such as greenbelts have restricted the urban sprawl of London since the midth century.

While fully one-third of the South East is still devoted to farming or horticulture, the region as a whole also has an extensive range of manufacturing industry.

With improvements in the transportation systems, however, nuclear and space research facilities, retailing, advertising, high-technology industries, and some services have moved to areas outside London, including Surrey , Buckinghamshire , and Hertfordshire.

With its theatres, concert halls, museums, and art galleries, London is the cultural capital of the country. At Tilbury , 26 miles 42 km downstream from London proper, the Port of London Authority oversees the largest and commercially most important port facilities in Britain.

Whether the people of the South East feel a regional identity is questionable. Sussex and Bedfordshire or Oxfordshire , Hampshire , and Kent have nothing much in common apart from being within the magnetic pull of London.

Loyalties are more specifically to towns, such as St. Albans or Brighton , and within London there is a sense of belonging more to localities—such as Chelsea or Hampstead, which acquire something of the character of urban villages—than to the metropolis as a whole.

Regional characteristics are stronger outside the South East. The West Midlands region, comprising the historic counties of Herefordshire , Worcestershire , Shropshire , Staffordshire , and Warwickshire , has given its name to the metropolitan county of West Midlands , which includes the cities of Birmingham and Coventry and the Black Country an urban area whose name reflects the coating of grime and soot afflicting the buildings of the region.

With a history dating to the beginnings of the Industrial Revolution , the West Midland towns gained a reputation for being ugly but prosperous.

However, the decline of heavy industry during the late 20th century took its toll on employment and prosperity in the region.

Not exclusively an industrial area, the West Midlands includes Shakespeare country around Stratford-upon-Avon , the fruit orchards of the Vale of Evesham , and the hill country on the Welsh border.

The East Midlands are less coherent as a region, taking in the manufacturing centres of Northampton , Leicester , Nottingham , and Derby.

Several canals in the region, including the Grand Junction and the Trent and Mersey, were used for commerce primarily from the late 18th to the early 20th century.

They are now being revived, mainly for recreational use. East Anglia retains an air of remoteness that belongs to its history. With the North Sea on its northern and eastern flanks, it was at one time almost cut off by fenland to the west now drained and forests cleared long ago to the south.

In medieval times it was one of the richest wool regions and, in some parts, was depopulated to make way for sheep.

It is now the centre of some of the most mechanized farming in England. Compared with other regions, East Anglia has a low population density; with rapid industrialization in cities such as Norwich and Bacton, however, this pattern is changing.

Regions become more distinctive the farther they are from London. The North West, chronically wet and murky, comprises the geographic counties of Cumbria , Lancashire , and Cheshire and the metropolitan counties of Greater Manchester and Merseyside including Liverpool.

The North West expresses itself in an accent of its own, with a tradition of variety-hall humour from the classic work of George Formby and Gracie Fields to the more recent efforts of Alexie Sayle ; it has also earned global renown for giving birth to British rock music , with the Beatles and other groups in Liverpool, and for football soccer , notably with the Liverpool FC and Manchester United football clubs.

Overall, the North West is still breaking into the new territories of modern industry, its old cotton towns symbolically overshadowed by the grim gritrock Pennine escarpments that have been stripped of their trees by two centuries of industrial smoke.

Nonetheless, Manchester remains an important financial and commercial centre. On the east side of the Pennines watershed, the metropolitan county of West Yorkshire , including the cities of Leeds and Bradford , has a character similar to that of the industrial North West.

Its prosperity formerly was based on coal and textile manufacture, and, though manufacturing remains important, West Yorkshire has diversified its economy.

This region also shows a rugged independence of character expressed in a tough style of humour. Farther south, steel is concentrated at Sheffield , world-famous for its cutlery and silver plate known as Sheffield plate.

Sheffield is the cultural and service centre of the industrial metropolitan county of South Yorkshire. The region also has extensive areas of farming in North Yorkshire and East Riding of Yorkshire , a deep-sea fishing industry operating from Hull , and tourist country along a fine coast in the east North York Moors National Park and in the beautiful valleys of the west Yorkshire Dales National Park.

The North East extends to the Scottish border, taking in the geographic counties of Northumberland and Durham. It also includes the metropolitan county of Tyne and Wear and the Teesside metropolitan area centred on Middlesbrough and is therefore unusually diverse.

Teesside was heavily industrialized iron and steel and shipbuilding during the 19th century, but it has more recently become an important tourist destination along the North Sea at the edge of North York Moors National Park.

Teesside also has one of the largest petrochemical complexes in Europe, and oil from the Ekofisk field in the North Sea is piped ashore there.

Coal mining was formerly the biggest industry in the county of Durham, but the last mine closed by the end of the 20th century, and the emphasis is now on engineering, the manufacture of pharmaceuticals, and service industries.

The local flavour of life can be found in the dialect known as Geordie and in the folk songs of Tyne and Wear and the former coal-mining villages.

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