United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland • Plan • The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland • Territory of the UK • Thames • Reach England • Here are some of the things you may hear off a bus in London • Capital of England • Flag of the United Kingdom • Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom • God Save the Queen
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland • The full name of the country the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It consists of four parts: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland occupies one third of the island of Ireland. It borders on the Irish Republic in the south. The island of Great Britain consists of three main parts: England (the southern and middle part of the island), Wales (a mountainous peninsula in the West) and Scotland (the northern part of the island).
England is the largest and the richest country of Great Britain. The capital of England is London but there are other large industrial cities, such as Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester and other famous and interesting cities such as York, Chester, Oxford and Cambridge.
Scotland is a country in the north of Great Britain. It is a part of the UK. Scotland is divided into three natural regions: the Southern Uplands, the Central Lowlands and the Highlands and islands. The capital of Scotland is Edinburgh, well known for its castle. Wales is the country in the west of Great Britain. It is mainly a mountainous land with a chiefly agricultural economy and an industrial and coal-mining area in the south.
Northern Ireland, also known as Ulster, is still a part of the United Kingdom. It is made up of six countries: Antrim, Armagh, Down, Fermanagh, Londonderry, and Tyrone. One third of the population lives in and around the capital, Belfast. . The Irish population is divided into two groups: the Protestants and the Catholics.
Territory of the UK • In general the territory of the UK is about 244,000 square kilometers, it takes the 75th place among other countries in the world. The population is urban. The capital of the country is London. Now Great Britain is separated from the continent by the English Channel, the narrowest part of which is called the Strait of Dover. The British Isles are surrounded by the shallow waters of the Irish Sea and the North Sea, the Norwegian Sea, the North Channel and the Atlantic Ocean.
The rivers of the region are short and of no great importance as waterways. The longest of them is "the Father of London", the Thames, which is a little over 200 miles. • The surface of GB varies greatly. The northern and western parts of the country are mountainous and are called the Highlands. But there are no high mountains in Great Britain. In the north the Cheviots separate England from Scotland, the Pennies stretch down North England along its middle, the Cambrian Mountains occupy the greater part of Wales and the Highlands of Scotland are the tallest of the British mountains. All the rest (south, east and centre) is a vast plain, which is called the Lowlands.
Reach England • You can reach England either by plane, by train, by car or by ship. The fastest way is by plane. London has three international airports: Heathrow. • The largest, connected to the city by underground; Gatwick, south of London, with a frequent train service.
You go to England by train or by car you have to cross the Channel. There is a frequent service of steamers and ferryboats which connect the continent to the south-east of England. People in Britain drive on the left and generally overtake on the right. The speed limit is 30 miles per hour (50 km/h) in towns and cities. • When you are in London you can choose from four different means of transport: bus, train, underground or taxi. The typical bus in London is a red double-decker. The first London bus started running between Paddington and the City in 1829. It carried 40 passengers and cost a shilling for six km.
Here are some of the things you may hear off a bus in London: • "Fares, please.“ • "Four pence, please." • "Full up inside; plenty of seats on top." • "Standing room only." • "No, sir, this bus does not go to Victoria Station." • "You want a number 11." • "No more seats on top; five seats inside."
As well as being the capital of England, London is the capital of the United Kingdom. London was founded by the Romans in 43 A.D. and was called Londinium. In 61 A.D. the town was burnt down and when it was rebuilt by the Romans it was surrounded by a wall. That area within the wall is now called the City of London. It is London's commercial and business centre. It contains the Bank of England, the Stock Exchange and the head offices of numerous companies and corporations. Here is situated the Tower of London. The Tower was built by William the Conqueror who conquered England in 1066. He was crowned at Westminster Abbey. Now most of the Government buildings are located there. During the Tudor period (l6th century) London became an important economic and financial centre. Capital of England
Flag of the United Kingdom • The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland uses as its national flag the royal banner locally known as the Union Flag or, popularly, Union Jack. The current design of the Union Flag dates from the union of Ireland and Great Britain in 1801. It consists of the red cross of Saint George (patron saint of England), edged in white, superimposed on the Cross ofSt Patrick (patron saint of Ireland), which are superimposed on the Saltire of Saint Andrew (patron saint of Scotland). • Its correct proportions are 1:2. However, the version officially used by the British Army modifies the proportions to 3:5, and additionally two of the red diagonals are cropped.
Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom • The Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom is the official coat of arms of the British monarch, currently Queen Elizabeth II. These arms are used by the Queen in her official capacity as monarch, and are officially known as her Arms of Dominion. Variants of the Royal Arms are used by other members of the Royal Family; and by the British Government in connection with the administration and government of the country. In Scotland, the Queen has a separate version of the Royal Arms, a variant of which is used by the Scotland Office. • The shield is quartered, depicting in the first and fourth quarters the three lions passant guardant of England; in the second, the rampant lion and double tressure fleury-counter-fleury of Scotland; and in the third, a harp for Ireland. • The crest is a lion statant guardant wearing the imperial crown, itself on another representation of that crown. • The dexter supporter is a likewise crowned lion, symbolizing England; the sinister, a unicorn, symbolising Scotland. According to legend a free unicorn was considered a very dangerous beast; therefore the heraldic unicorn is chained, as were both supporting unicorns in the Royal coat of arms of Scotland.
God Save the Queen • God Save the Queen", or "God Save the King", is an anthem used in a number of Commonwealth realms. It is the national anthem of the United Kingdom, Norfolk Island, one of the two national anthems of the Cayman Islands and New Zealand (since 1977) and the royal anthem of Canada (since 1980), Australia (since 1984), the Isle of Man, Belize, Jamaica, and Tuvalu. In countries not previously part of the British Empire the tune of "God Save the Queen" has also been used as the basis for different patriotic songs, though still generally connected with royal ceremony. The authorship of the song is unknown, and beyond its first verse, which is consistent, it has many historic and extant versions: Since its first publication, different verses have been added and taken away and, even today, different publications include various selections of verses in various orders. In general only one, or sometimes two verses are sung, but on rare occasions three. • In Britain, the Queen (or King) is saluted with the entire anthem, while other members of the royal family who are entitled to royal salute (such as the Prince of Wales) receive just the first six bars. The first six bars also form part of the Vice Regal Salute in Commonwealth realms outside the United Kingdom (e.g., in Canada, the governors general and lieutenant are saluted with the first six bars of "God Save the Queen", followed by the first four and last four bars of "O Canada"). The words of the song, like its title, are adapted to the gender of monarch, with "King" replacing "Queen", "he" replacing "she", and so forth, when a king reigns. In the United Kingdom, the last line of the third verse is also changed (see below).
1 • God save our gracious Queen, • Long live our noble Queen, • God save the Queen: • Send her victorious, • Happy and glorious, • Long to reign over us: • God save the Queen. • 2 • O Lord, our God, arise, • Scatter her enemies, • And make them fall. • Confound their politics, • Frustrate their knavish tricks, • On Thee our hopes we fix, • God save us all. • 3 • Thy choicest gifts in store, • On her be pleased to pour; • Long may she reign: • May she defend our laws, • And ever give us cause • To sing with heart and voice • God save the Queen.