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There are also several islands which are closely linked with the UK but are not part of it: the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. These have their own governments and are called ‘Crown dependencies’.
The English government encouraged Scottish and English Protestants to settle in Ulster, the northern province of Ireland, taking over the land from Catholic landholders. These settlements were known as plantations.
UK laws ensure that people are not treated unfairly in any area of life or work because of their age, disability, sex, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sexuality or marital status.
British society is founded on fundamental values and principles which all those living in the UK should respect and support.
Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon, England. He was a playwright and actor and wrote many poems and plays.
Shakespeare wrote many sonnets (poems which must be 14 lines long) and some longer poems.
County Courts deal with a wide range of civil disputes.
The small claims procedure is an informal way of helping people to settle minor disputes without spending a lot of time and money using a lawyer.
Some constituencies were controlled by a single wealthy family. These were called ‘pocket boroughs’. Other constituencies had hardly any voters and were called ‘rotten boroughs’.
The Council of Europe is separate from the EU. It has 47 member countries, including the UK, and is responsible for the protection and promotion of human rights in those countries.
People in the UK are living longer than ever before. This is due to improved living standards and better health care.
The Proms is an eight-week summer season of orchestral classical music that takes place in various venues, including the Royal Albert Hall in London.
The first farmers arrived in Britain 6,000 years ago. These people built houses, tombs and monuments on the land. One of these monuments, Stonehenge, still stands in what is now the English county of Wiltshire.
If an MP dies or resigns, there will be a fresh election, called a by-election, in his or her constituency.
The Habeas Corpus Act became law in 1679. The Act guaranteed that no one could be held prisoner unlawfully. Every prisoner has a right to a court hearing.
Big Ben is the nickname for the great bell of the clock at the Houses of Parliament in London. Many people call the clock Big Ben as well.
All dogs in public places must wear a collar showing the name and address of the owner. The owner is responsible for keeping the dog under control and for cleaning up after the animal in a public place.
In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, if an accused person is aged 10 to 17, the case is normally heard in a Youth Court in front of up to three specially trained magistrates or a District Judge.
Northern Ireland and Scotland have their own banknotes, which are valid everywhere in the UK. However, shops and businesses do not have to accept them.
Adam Smith developed ideas about economics which are still referred to today.
To be able to vote in a parliamentary, local or European election, you must have your name on the electoral register.
Local authorities provide a range of services in their areas. They are funded by money from central government and by local taxes.
A national trust is an organisation dedicated to preserving the cultural heritage and operates as a charitable organisation serving England, Wales and Northern Ireland (it is commonly known in the UK as the National Trust).
Snowdonia is a national park in North Wales. Its most well-known landmark is Snowdon, which is the highest mountain in Wales.
Textile and engineering firms from the north of England and the Midlands sent agents to India and Pakistan to find workers. For about 25 years, people from the West Indies, India, Pakistan and (later) Bangladesh travelled to work and settle in Britain.
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