Area: 244,110 sq km (94,251 sq ml).
Currency: 1 Pound = 100 Pence.
Religions: Church of England 50% Roman Catholic 13% Church of Scotland 4% Methodist 2% Others 31%.
Ethnic Groups: British 94% Others 6%.
|A country in north-west Europe
consisting of England, Wales and Scotland, and the
province of Northern Ireland. The Channel Islands and the
Isle of Man are British Crown dependencies but are not an
integral part of the United Kingdom.
Great Britain is a large island off Europes north-west coast. The distance from John o'Groats to Lands End is 971 km (603 ml); yet such are the coastal indentations that no part is more than 160 km (100 ml) from the sea. Of its mountains which lie in the north and west, few are higher than 1,000 m (3,300 ft), while if its rivers none is longer than the Severn at 354 km (220 ml). Within this small compass, however, the geographical differences are great. The rocks are of many periods and kinds, with granite and slate, basalt, sandstone and hard limestone all included. Generally lower in the west than the north, the rocky masses underlie much moorland, generally bare of trees and having for vegetation peat moss, heather and acid grass in varying proportions. The south of the country, which is warmer and drier than the rest, has hills of chalk and flint or limestone rising to 300 m (1,000 ft). Here the valley's are broad, with sandy soil or clay supporting oak, ash, beech and chestnut trees. In the east, which is lower and flatter, river gravels and alluvium from the North Sea have produced dark rich soils. Its principal river is the Thames which flows into the North Sea.
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