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Portal:England

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Royal Standard of England
Location of England within the United Kingdom.

England (About this sound /ˈɪŋɡlənd/ ) is a country that is part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Its mainland is on the central and southern part of the island of Great Britain in the North Atlantic. England shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; and adjoins the Irish Sea to the north-west, the Celtic Sea to the south-west and the North Sea to the east. The English Channel separates it from continental Europe. In addition to the mainland, England includes over 100 smaller islands, including the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight. England's population is about 51 million, around 84% of the United Kingdom.

England has been settled by humans of various cultures for over 29,000 years but it takes its name from the Angles, one of the Germanic tribes who settled Great Britain during the 5th and 6th centuries. England became a unified state in AD 927 and after the Age of Discovery has had a significant cultural and legal impact on the wider world. England was where the English language, the Anglican Church and English law, which forms the basis of the common law legal systems of countries around the world, developed. The innovations that came from England have been widely adopted by other nations, such as its parliamentary system, which is the world's oldest. During the 18th century England underwent the Industrial Revolution and became the first country in the world to industrialise. Its Royal Society laid the foundations of modern experimental science.

Most of England is lowland but there are upland regions in the north (such as the Lake District, Pennines and Yorkshire Moors) and in the south and south west (such as Dartmoor, the Cotswolds, and the North and South Downs). London, a global city and England's capital, is the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. The population of England is concentrated in London and the South East, as well as the conurbations in the Midlands, the North West, the North East and Yorkshire, which developed as major industrial regions during the 19th century.

The Kingdom of England (which included Wales) was a sovereign state until 1 May 1707 when the Acts of Union put into effect the terms agreed in the Treaty of Union the previous year and resulted in a political union with the Kingdom of Scotland that created the united Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1800 Great Britain was united with Ireland through another Act of Union 1800 to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In 1922 the Irish Free State was established as a separate dominion but the Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act in 1927 reincorporated into the kingdom six Irish counties to officially create the current United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

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The River Chew

The Chew Valley is an area in North Somerset, England, named after the River Chew, which rises at Chewton Mendip, and joins the River Avon at Keynsham. Technically, the area of the valley is bounded by the water catchment area of the Chew and its tributaries; however, the name Chew Valley is often used less formally to cover other nearby areas, for example, Blagdon Lake and its environs, which by a stricter definition are part of the Yeo Valley. The valley is an area of rich arable and dairy farmland, interspersed with a number of villages.

The landscape consists of the valley of the River Chew and is generally low-lying and undulating. It is bounded by higher ground ranging from Dundry Down to the north, the Lulsgate Plateau to the west, the Mendip Hills to the south and the Hinton Blewett, Marksbury and Newton Saint Loe plateau areas to the east. The valley's boundary generally follows the top of scarp slopes except at the southwestern and southeastern boundaries where flat upper areas of the Chew Valley grade gently into the Yeo Valley and eastern Mendip Hills respectively. The River Chew was dammed in the 1950s to create Chew Valley Lake, which provides drinking water for the nearby city of Bristol and surrounding areas. The lake is a prominent landscape feature of the valley, a focus for recreation, and is internationally recognised for its nature conservation interest, because of the bird species, plants and insects.

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New Forest ponies

Photo credit: Michael Rowe

Ponies owned by Commoners running free in the New Forest in southern England.


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James Hamilton "Jimmy" Speirs
James Hamilton "Jimmy" Speirs (22 March 1886 — 20 August 1917) was a Scottish footballer who represented his country on one occasion, scored the winning goal in the 1911 FA Cup Final, and received the Military Medal during the First World War. Born in Glasgow, he was one of six children, and worked as a clerk while playing youth football for Annandale. He started his adult football career with local junior team Maryhill, where he played for less than a season, before he moved to Rangers in 1905. He spent three years with the club, but won only the Glasgow Merchants' Charity Cup, before he joined a third Glasgow side Clyde. After one season, he left Clyde and Scotland, and joined Bradford City for their second season in the First Division. His greatest success came in his second season with Bradford, when he was the club's captain and goalscorer in their FA Cup Final victory of 1911, in a team featuring eight Scottish-born players.

He spent another two seasons with Bradford City, before he joined Leeds City, but after two seasons, the First World War broke out. League football continued for one more season, at the end of which Speirs returned to Glasgow. Married with two young children, Speirs would have been exempt from conscription but he volunteered to join the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders in 1915. He was promoted to Lance Corporal, Corporal and Sergeant, and won the Military Medal for bravery in the field, but was killed during the Battle of Passchendaele in August 1917, at the age of 31.

Did you know?

  • ...that the HMS Queen (1902) was fitted with Babcock and Wilcox cylindrical boilers due to service problems with the water service boilers?
  • ...that the Charter Roll is the administrative record created by the medieval office of the chancery that recorded all the charters issued by the chancery?
  • ...that Canterbury in eastern Kent was abandoned at the end of the Roman period, but was resettled by the Saxons?
  • ...that English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams has sold more albums in the United Kingdom than any other British solo artist in history?

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Cities and major towns: BlackpoolBirminghamBristolChelmsfordLeedsLiverpoolLondonManchesterNewcastleNottinghamOxfordPortsmouthSheffieldSouthamptonStoke-on-Trent

Culture: The Football AssociationRugby Football UnionEngland and Wales Cricket BoardEnglish inventions and discoveries

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Economy: Bank of EnglandLondon Stock ExchangeChancellor of the ExchequerMonetary Policy CommitteeHM Treasury

History: Timeline of English historyPrehistoric BritainRoman BritainAnglo-Saxon EnglandHouse of LancasterHouse of YorkHouse of TudorHouse of Stuart

Governance: Kingdom of EnglandPrime Minister of the United KingdomParliament of the United KingdomHome SecretaryLocal Government Boundary Commission for EnglandAdministrative divisions of EnglandEnglish law

Symbols: FlagsFlag of EnglandSt George's CrossTudor roseCoat of arms of England

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