United Kingdom: Facts and Interesting Information

United Kingdom Fact File

Location: The United Kingdom (UK) is located to the north-west of continental Europe. The UK is made up of the island of Great Britain (including England, Scotland and Wales), and part of the island of Ireland – the area called Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland has a border with the Republic of Ireland, but apart from this, the rest of the UK is surrounded by water (the Atlantic Ocean, the North Sea, the Irish Sea and the English Channel.

Capital: London (also the UK’s largest city)

Population: 63 million (approx)

Area: 243,610 km sq

Currency: Pound Sterling

Official Language: English

The Flag of the United Kingdom

Flag of the United Kingdom

Often called the Union Jack or Union Flag, the flag of the United Kingdom combines the flags of the the patron saints of England, Ireland and Scotland -the red cross of Saint George, the Cross of St Patrick and the St Andrew’s Cross (the Saltire). Wales is not represented in the flag because when the flag design was put together, Wales was part of England.

Union Flag

 

Other Facts About The United Kingdom

  • The United Kingdom is described as a set of countries (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) within a country (United Kingdom). To add to the confusion, the term Britain is often used instead of United Kingdom. Strictly speaking, Britain (short for Great Britain) should only be used to describe the island of Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland). Click here to learn more about the differences between the terms United Kingdom, British Isles, Great Britain and England.
  • The official name of the United Kingdom is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
  • The people who live in the UK are referred to as British.
  • People have been living in the UK for about 30 thousand years. It has been the home of the Celts, the Picts, the Romans, the Anglo-Saxons, the Vikings, and the Normans.
  • The UK fought against Germany in both World War 1 and World War 2.
  • The Channel Tunnel connects the UK to France. It is the world’s longest underground tunnel (38 km underwater).
  • The Channel Islands (Jersey and Guernsey) and the Isle of Man do not form part of the United Kingdom.
  • The Summer Olympic Games have been held in London on three occasions: 1908, 1948 and 2012. The United Kingdom team is referred to as Team GB.

To learn more about the four countries within the United Kingdom, please follow the links below:

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