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In the 19th century the UK produced more than half of the world’s supplies of iron, coal and cotton cloth.
The Bill of Rights of 1689 limited the powers of the king and increased the powers of Parliament.
Textile and engineering firms from the north of England and the Midlands sent agents to India and Pakistan to recruit workers.
The BBC is financed by funds raised from TV licences. Everyone in the UK with a television, computer or other medium which can be used for watching TV must have a television licence.
The Scottish Grand National at Ayr, and Royal Ascot, a five-day meeting in Berkshire, are two important dates in the horse-racing calendar.
The term Great Britain dates from the union in 1707 of England and Scotland.
The Church of England is the official church of state in the UK. The monarch is head of the Church of England.
The Good Friday Agreement of 1998 provided the basis for the establishment of the Northern Ireland Assembly.
MPs hold regular ‘surgeries’, where constituents can go in person to talk about issues that are of concern to them.
The Domesday Book is a record of the towns and villages in England. The Bayeux Tapestry tells the story of the Norman Conquest.
At the end of the Civil War, England became a republic and Oliver Cromwell was made Lord Protector.
Queen Elizabeth II has reigned since her father’s death in 1952, and in 2012 she celebrated her Diamond Jubilee (60 years as queen).
Britain fought a number of wars with France during the Middle Ages and later.
Most citizens of the UK, the Irish Republic and the Commonwealth can stand for public office. There are some exceptions, including members of the armed forces.
The Chartists campaigned for reform of the voting system. The changes they wanted included annual elections and for all regions to be equal in the electoral system.
An Ulster fry is a traditional food of Northern Ireland. It is a fried meal with bacon, eggs, sausage, black pudding, white pudding, tomatoes, mushrooms, soda bread and potato bread.
Shopping locally for products will reduce your carbon footprint, because the products you buy will not have had to travel as far.
The capital cities of the nations of the UK are: London (England), Cardiff (Wales), Edinburgh (Scotland) and Belfast (Northern Ireland).
After the 2010 General Election a coalition government was formed. The two parties in the coalition are the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats.
There are some differences between the systems of courts in different parts of the UK.
The Romans left England in AD 410 to defend other parts of their Empire. They had occupied England for 400 years.
The age limit for jury service is 70. Anyone who is on the electoral register and is aged 18 to 70 can be asked to do jury service.
King Alfred the Great united the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and defeated the Vikings.
Some cricket games can last for up to five days and still result in a draw.
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