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Sunday, May 20, 2018

Regions of The United Kingdom (UK)

The United Kingdom is divided into four constituent Regions (Home Nations): England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, which as a result of various acts of union, led to the creation of the current unitary state.

Most of English area is characterized by hills and plains divided from east to west by a few ranges of hills. From the North to the South the most relevant ones are: the Cumbrian Mountains, the Pennines, the hills of the Peak District, the Cotswolds and the Chilterns. The main rivers are the Thames, the Severn, the Trent, the Humber and the Tyne. Its main cities are London (its Capital and the seat of Government), Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool, Nottingham, Leeds, Bristol and Newcastle upon Tyne. The economy of England is the most important one troughout the UK and it is the 18th in the world for its purchasing power.

England is a leader in both chemical and pharmaceutical sectors and in its key technology areas, particularly in the Aerospace industry, weaponry and software. London is home of the Stock Exchange, the largest stock exchange in the United Kingdom and the largest one in Europe, given that it is home to some of the most important companies in the world.

Wales is mostly mountainous, the mountains of Snowdonia rise in the North-West, reaching their maximum height of Wales with Mount Snowdon, which is 1,085 meters high. In the central region the Cambrian Mountains rise and in the South-East there are the Brecon Beacons.

Wales for many Brits who feel alienated from city life has become the dream of a retreat from hustle and modernity. Farming is poor (oats, barley and potatoes), fishing is good (herring, mackerel, cod) industrial activity is remarkable, as much as exploitation of deposits of coal and iron ore. In addition to the Capital Cardiff, the main cities are Newport, Swansea, Wrexham.

The territory of Scotland is characterized by plains in the South and in the East side and by mountains - including Ben Nevis (1,344 m) and highlands in the Northern and Western parts. There are numerous lakes and deep fjords. Scotland has got a vast number of islands off the Western and Northern coasts: the Hebrides, the Orkneys and the Shetland Islands. The capital of Scotland is Edinburgh, but the largest city is Glasgow. Scottish people themselves consider both the cities two capitals. The first is their cultural capital while the second is their economic capital. Other major cities are Aberdeen, Perth, Dundee and Inverness.

Although it belongs to the United Kingdom, Scotland has a independent legal system, a separate educational system and its own national Church. The economy of Scotland, as well as the United Kingdom's one, has strong links with Europe and the whole the world. Exports have indeed a great importance.

Scotland has a market system which is very connected to Public management. After the industrial revolution, Scottish economy has focused on heavy industry, which is dominated by productive sectors such as shipbuilding, coal mining and the steel industry. The decline of heavy industry, in the second half of the twentieth century, led to a considerable shift of activities towards services and technology. The 80s saw the great expansion of the so-called Silicon Glen, which is set between Glasgow and Edinburgh, where many companies operating in information technology and in the field of technology in general settled. Edinburgh is the main Scottish financial center and it is the sixth in Europe. Financial groups work in the Scottish capital, e.g. the Royal Bank of Scotland (the second European bank), HBOS (owner of the Bank of Scotland) and Standard Life.

Northern Ireland, situated in the North-East of the Island of Ireland, is mostly hilly. Its capital is Belfast.

The economy of Northern Ireland is the smallest one compared to the other three major economies that make up the United Kingdom. Northern Ireland had traditionally an industrial economy which was particularly in shipbuilding, rope manufacture and textiles. Most of the heavy industry has been replaced by services, primarily public.

Tourism plays an important role in the local economy. More recently, their economy has profited from important investments by major corporations dealing with high-tech, thanks to government subsidies and the presence of skilled workforce.

These four Regions have their internal peculiar administrative divisions:

ENGLAND:

  • 9 Regions without delegated power.
  • Metropolitan Government in London.
  • 34 Counties.
  • 47 Unitary Authorities in the county.
  • 33 Town Councils in London.
  • 36 Metropolitan Districts.
  • 238 Districts.
  • Approximately 7,900 districts and Town councils.

WALES:

  • National Assembly of Wales.
  • 22 Unitary councils.
  • 732 Town and community councils.

SCOTLAND:

  • Scottish Parliament.
  • 32 Unitary authorities.

NORTHERN IRLAND:

  • Semi-autonomous Northern Ireland Assembly.
  • 26 Unitary councils.

In addition, the UK owns some other overseas territories which were kept under the Kingdom after the end of the British Empire:

  • Anguilla.
  • Bermuda.
  • British Antarctic Territory.
  • British Indian Ocean Territory.
  • Cayman Islands.
  • Falkland Islands (also known as the Falkland Islands or Islas Malvinas).
  • South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.
  • Gilbratar.
  • Montserrat (Island).
  • Pitcairn Islands.
  • Island of St. Helena.
  • Turks and Caicos Islands.
  • British Virgin Islands.
  • Military bases of Akrotiri and Dhekelia in Cyprus.

The Isle of Man is located in the sea between Ireland and England, it is not part of the United Kingdom but it is a dependency of the British Crown while the Channel Islands, located in the English Channel, have a similar status to the Isle of Man, belonging to the King of England as the Duke of Normandy. The Orkneys and the Shetlands Islands, however, are simply part of Scotland.

In the UK, the climate is tempered by the current of the Gulf of Mexico. Wet from the Atlantic Ocean cause heavy rain and foggy weather. The UK is the most developed European countries thanks to a thriving industry and very developed Services.

Agriculture is intensive and it produces cereals, sugar beet and potatoes. It has a well-developed breeding. Another important activity is fishing. The rich in resources, especially coal. Oil and natural gas are extracted from the North Sea.

Over the years the industry has turned from textile and steel production into the most technologically advanced industries, such as electronics. Thanks to the oil of the North Sea, even the poorest areas like Scotland managed to develop.

Today, the majority of the population is employed in services. Financial assets, such as banks and insurance companies, are the most developed ones and they are based in the City of London.

Major cities in the UK are:

  • LONDON: Capital of the Country that lies on the banks of the Thames. In the City, its business district, banks and insurance companies have their headquarters.
  • OXFORD AND CAMBRIDGE: Both of them are located in the South of the Country and they own major Universities. Oxford, in particular, is the oldest University in the UK.
  • MANCHESTER AND LIVERPOOL: Since the Industrial Revolution, Manchester hosted many textile industries where cotton from the colonies was worked. Liverpool was home to the port where they used to download cotton from different English domains in the world. In 1830 the two cities were linked by a railroad. Manchester continued its economic development while Liverpool had serious problems due to the decline of its port.
  • EDIMBURGH: It is located on the East coast of Scotland. In addition to being the capital, it is an important cultural center. Its castle is a major interesting place for its tourists.
  • BELFAST: The capital of Northern Ireland, is located at the mouth of the River Lagan. Fighting between Protestants and Catholics impoverished it, but nevertheless, it was able to develop economically. Developed textiles industries and shipbuilding are there.

The size of the Country, its geographical diversity and its ethnic mosaic involve a significant cultural diversification. There are considerable differences from Region to Region in spite of its English language, spoken everywhere, which is a powerful factor of national cohesion.

The choice of the State where a company wants to work or settle is essential, therefore Bright Business Consulting LLP is the congenial partner, which through appropriate "Counselling Aimed at Company Investigation and Commercial Information" can offer the necessary support and the perfect help.

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