The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the British System of Government

16. března 2018 v 8:00 | Another |  Maturita Anglický jazyk

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the British System of Government

The official name of this country is The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It is situated on the British Isles, which lie off the north-west coast of Europe. It consists of two large islands (Great Britain and Ireland) and about 5 000 smaller ones (E.g. the Isle of Wight, the Isle of Scilly, the Isle of Man, Anglesey, the Hebrides, the Orkneys, the Shetlands and the Channel Islands). Its neighbors are Ireland to west and France to south-east. It covers the area of 245 000 square kilometers. We can get there either by air or by ferry (or by faster hovercraft) from Calais to Dover across the Strait of Dover, which is the shortest way. We can get there also through the tunnel under the English Channel. The Great Britain includes four countries: England with its capital London, which is also a capital of United Kingdom, Scotland with Edinburgh, Wales with Cardiff and Northern Ireland with Belfast. Other big cities include Cambridge, Oxford, Winchester, Plymouth, Manchester and Liverpool. Population is over 60 million people. Official language is of course English with other recognized regional languages such as Welsh, Irish, Cornish or Scottish Gaelic. National anthem is God Save the Queen, currency is Pound Sterling. Flag is known as Union Jack.
England accounts for just over half of the total area of the United Kingdom. Most of the country consists of lowland terrain, with mountainous terrain north-west of the Tees-Exe line; including the Cumbrian Mountains of the Lake District, the Pennines and limestone hills of the Peak District, Exmoor and Dartmoor. England's highest mountain is Scafell Pike (978 meters) in the Lake District. Its principal rivers are the Severn, Thames, Humber, Tees, Tyne, Tweed, Avon, Exe and Mersey.
Scotland accounts for just under a third of the total area of the United Kingdom and including nearly eight hundred islands, predominantly west and north of the mainland; notably the Hebrides, Orkney Islands and Shetland Islands. The topography of Scotland is distinguished by the Highland Boundary Fault- a geological rock fracture- which traverses Scotland from Arran in the west to Stonehaven in the east. The more rugged Highland region contains the majority of Scotland's mountains land, including Ben Nevis which at 1,343 meters is the highest point in the British Isles. Lowland areas-especially the narrow waist of land between the Firth of Clyde and the Firth of Forth known as the Central Belt-are flatter and home to most of the population include Glasgow, Scotland's largest city, and Edinburgh, its capital and political centre.
Wales accounts for less than a tenth of the total area of United Kingdom. Wales is mostly mountainous, though South Wales is the less mountainous than North and mid Wales. The main population and industrial areas are in South Wales, consisting of the coastal cities of Cardiff, Swansea and Newport, and the South Wales Valleys to their north. The highest mountains in Wales are in Snowdonia and include Snowdon which at 1085 is the highest peak in Wales.
Northern Ireland separated from Great Britain by the Irish Sea and North Channel is mostly hilly. It includes Lough Neagh which is the largest lake in the British Isles by area.
The United Kingdom has a temperate climate, with plentiful rainfall all year round. But there are many interesting places, including Brighton (which lies on the southern coast of England and it is famous seaside for holidaymakers), Salisbury Plains (famous for a place called Stonehenge. These are giant stones in a circle. They are assumed to be 3000 years old), Loch Ness (most famous lake in the Highland region by fame about Loch Ness monster), Lake District (there is beautiful scenery and nature), and many others.
The United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy. Power is represented by a Monarch and Parliament. The present Monarch is the Queen Elizabeth II. She had four descendants- Charles, Andrew, Edward and Anne. The heir of the throne is William who is Prince Charles's and Lady Diana's son because there were some scandals about Charles.
Parliament has two chambers, The House of Lords and the House of Commons. The first one contains more than 1000 members but only 250 of them take an active part in the work. The house of Commons contains 650 elected members. They are elected at General election or by election which is decided on a simple majority. It is held every 5 years and everyone over the age of 18 can vote. Parliament and the Queen represent legislative power. The British democratic system depends on the two strongest parties- Conservative and Labor. The party which wins the majority of sets forms the Government and its leader becomes the Prime Minister. Present Prime Minister is Theresa May from Conservative party. The Prime Minister chooses 20 Ministers to form Cabinet. The leader of opposition form Shadow Cabinet. The United Kingdom constitution is unwritten. It is based on agreement, tradition and common law.

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