This article is about the country.
For other uses, see England (disambiguation).
and largest city
|Ethnic groups (2011)|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Government||Part of a constitutional monarchy, direct government exercised by the government of the United Kingdom|
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|House of Commons||533 MPs (of 650)|
|Unification of Angles, Saxons and Danes||12 July 927|
|Union with Scotland||1 May 1707|
|Land||130,279 km (50,301 sq mi)|
|Density||432/km (1,118.9/sq mi)|
|Currency||Pound sterling (GBP; £)|
|Time zone||UTC (Greenwich Mean Time)|
|Summer (DST)||UTC+1 (British Summer Time)|
|Date format||dd/mm/yyyy (AD)|
|ISO 3166 code||GB-ENG|
The area now called England was first inhabited by modern humans during the Upper Paleolithic period, but takes its name from the Angles, a Germanic tribe deriving its name from the Anglia peninsula, who settled during the 5th and 6th centuries.
England became a unified state in the 10th century, and since the Age of Discovery, which began during the 15th century, has had a significant cultural and legal impact on the wider world.
The English language, the Anglican Church, and English law – the basis for the common law legal systems of many other countries around the world – developed in England, and the country's parliamentary system of government has been widely adopted by other nations.
The Industrial Revolution began in 18th-century England, transforming its society into the world's first industrialised nation.
England's terrain is chiefly low hills and plains, especially in central and southern England.
England's population of over 55 million comprises 84% of the population of the United Kingdom, largely concentrated around London, the South East, and conurbations in the Midlands, the North West, the North East, and Yorkshire, which each developed as major industrial regions during the 19th century.
The Kingdom of England – which after 1535 included Wales – ceased being a separate sovereign state on 1 May 1707, when the Acts of Union put into effect the terms agreed in the Treaty of Union the previous year, resulting in a political union with the Kingdom of Scotland to create the Kingdom of Great Britain.
See also: Toponymy of England
The term was then used in a different sense to the modern one, meaning "the land inhabited by the English", and it included English people in what is now south-east Scotland but was then part of the English kingdom of Northumbria.
The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle recorded that the Domesday Book of 1086 covered the whole of England, meaning the English kingdom, but a few years later the Chronicle stated that King Malcolm III went "out of Scotlande into Lothian in Englaland", thus using it in the more ancient sense.
The etymology of the tribal name itself is disputed by scholars; it has been suggested that it derives from the shape of the Angeln peninsula, an angular shape.
How and why a term derived from the name of a tribe that was less significant than others, such as the Saxons, came to be used for the entire country and its people is not known, but it seems this is related to the custom of calling the Germanic people in Britain Angli Saxones or English Saxons to distinguish them from continental Saxons (Eald-Seaxe) of Old Saxony between the Weser and Eider rivers in Northern Germany.
In Scottish Gaelic, another language which developed on the island of Great Britain, the Saxon tribe gave their name to the word for England (Sasunn); similarly, the Welsh name for the English language is "Saesneg".
Albion is also applied to England in a more poetic capacity, though its original meaning is the island of Britain as a whole.
Main article: History of England
Prehistory and antiquity
Main article: Prehistoric Britain
The earliest known evidence of human presence in the area now known as England was that of Homo antecessor, dating to approximately 780,000 years ago.
The oldest proto-human bones discovered in England date from 500,000 years ago.
Modern humans are known to have inhabited the area during the Upper Paleolithic period, though permanent settlements were only established within the last 6,000 years.
As the seas rose, it was separated from Ireland 10,000 years ago and from Eurasia two millennia later.
The Beaker culture arrived around 2,500 BC, introducing drinking and food vessels constructed from clay, as well as vessels used as reduction pots to smelt copper ores.
By heating together tin and copper, which were in abundance in the area, the Beaker culture people made bronze, and later iron from iron ores.
Brythonic was the spoken language during this time.
Earlier divisions are unknown because the Britons were not literate.
Like other regions on the edge of the Empire, Britain had long enjoyed trading links with the Romans.
The author of one study of Roman Britain suggested that from 43 AD to 84 AD, the Roman invaders killed somewhere between 100,000 and 250,000 people from a population of perhaps 2,000,000.
There is debate about when Christianity was first introduced; it was no later than the 4th century, probably much earlier.
According to Bede, missionaries were sent from Rome by Eleutherius at the request of the chieftain Lucius of Britain in 180 AD, to settle differences as to Eastern and Western ceremonials, which were disturbing the church.
By 410, during the Decline of the Roman Empire, Britain was left exposed by the end of Roman rule in Britain and the withdrawal of Roman army units, to defend the frontiers in continental Europe and partake in civil wars.
Celtic Christian monastic and missionary movements flourished: Patrick (5th-century Ireland) and in the 6th century Brendan (Clonfert), Comgall (Bangor), David (Wales), Aiden (Lindisfarne) and Columba (Iona).
This period of Christianity was influenced by ancient Celtic culture in its sensibilities, polity, practices and theology.
Local "congregations" were centred in the monastic community and monastic leaders were more like chieftains, as peers, rather than in the more hierarchical system of the Roman-dominated church.
Main article: England in the Middle Ages
Roman military withdrawals left Britain open to invasion by pagan, seafaring warriors from north-western continental Europe, chiefly the Saxons, Angles, Jutes and Frisians who had long raided the coasts of the Roman province.
These groups then began to settle in increasing numbers over the course of the fifth and sixth centuries, initially in the eastern part of the country.
Their advance was contained for some decades after the Britons' victory at the Battle of Mount Badon, but subsequently resumed, over-running the fertile lowlands of Britain and reducing the area under Brittonic control to a series of separate enclaves in the more rugged country to the west by the end of the 6th century.
Contemporary texts describing this period are extremely scarce, giving rise to its description as a Dark Age.
The nature and progression of the Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain is consequently subject to considerable disagreement; the emerging consensus is that it occurred on a large scale in the south and east but was less substantial to the north and west, where Celtic languages continued to be spoken even in areas under Anglo-Saxon control.
Roman-dominated Christianity had, in general, disappeared from the conquered territories, but was reintroduced by missionaries from Rome led by Augustine from 597 onwards.
Disputes between the Roman- and Celtic-dominated forms of Christianity ended in victory for the Roman tradition at the Council of Whitby (664), which was ostensibly about tonsures (clerical haircuts) and the date of Easter, but more significantly, about the differences in Roman and Celtic forms of authority, theology, and practice (Lehane).
During the settlement period the lands ruled by the incomers seem to have been fragmented into numerous tribal territories, but by the 7th century, when substantial evidence of the situation again becomes available, these had coalesced into roughly a dozen kingdoms including Northumbria, Mercia, Wessex, East Anglia, Essex, Kent and Sussex.
Over the following centuries, this process of political consolidation continued.
The 7th century saw a struggle for hegemony between Northumbria and Mercia, which in the 8th century gave way to Mercian preeminence.
In the early 9th century Mercia was displaced as the foremost kingdom by Wessex.
Later in that century escalating attacks by the Danes culminated in the conquest of the north and east of England, overthrowing the kingdoms of Northumbria, Mercia and East Anglia.
A fresh wave of Scandinavian attacks from the late 10th century ended with the conquest of this united kingdom by Sweyn Forkbeard in 1013 and again by his son Cnut in 1016, turning it into the centre of a short-lived North Sea Empire that also included Denmark and Norway.
However, the native royal dynasty was restored with the accession of Edward the Confessor in 1042.
This conquest led to the almost total dispossession of the English elite and its replacement by a new French-speaking aristocracy, whose speech had a profound and permanent effect on the English language.
Subsequently, the House of Plantagenet from Anjou inherited the English throne under Henry II, adding England to the budding Angevin Empire of fiefs the family had inherited in France including Aquitaine.
The period saw changes in trade and legislation, including the signing of the Magna Carta, an English legal charter used to limit the sovereign's powers by law and protect the privileges of freemen.
Catholic monasticism flourished, providing philosophers, and the universities of Oxford and Cambridge were founded with royal patronage.
Eventually it led to the Yorkists losing the throne entirely to a Welsh noble family the Tudors, a branch of the Lancastrians headed by Henry Tudor who invaded with Welsh and Breton mercenaries, gaining victory at the Battle of Bosworth Field where the Yorkist king Richard III was killed.
England began to develop naval skills, and exploration to the West intensified.
In contrast with much of European Protestantism, the roots of the split were more political than theological.
He also legally incorporated his ancestral land Wales into the Kingdom of England with the 1535–1542 acts.
The former took the country back to Catholicism while the latter broke from it again, forcefully asserting the supremacy of Anglicanism.
The Roanoke colony failed and is known as the lost colony after it was found abandoned on the return of the late-arriving supply ship.
During the Elizabethan period, England was at war with Spain.
An armada sailed from Spain in 1588 as part of a wider plan to invade England and re-establish a Catholic monarchy.
The plan was thwarted by bad coordination, stormy weather and successful harrying attacks by an English fleet under Lord Howard of Effingham.
The political structure of the island changed in 1603, when the King of Scots, James VI, a kingdom which had been a long-time rival to English interests, inherited the throne of England as James I, thereby creating a personal union.
He styled himself King of Great Britain, although this had no basis in English law.
Under the auspices of King James VI and I the Authorised King James Version of the Holy Bible was published in 1611.
It was the standard version of the Bible read by most Protestant Christians for four hundred years until modern revisions were produced in the 20th century.
Based on conflicting political, religious and social positions, the English Civil War was fought between the supporters of Parliament and those of King Charles I, known colloquially as Roundheads and Cavaliers respectively.
After the Glorious Revolution of 1688, it was constitutionally established that King and Parliament should rule together, though Parliament would have the real power.
This was established with the Bill of Rights in 1689.
Among the statutes set down were that the law could only be made by Parliament and could not be suspended by the King, also that the King could not impose taxes or raise an army without the prior approval of Parliament.
Also since that time, no British monarch has entered the House of Commons when it is sitting, which is annually commemorated at the State Opening of Parliament by the British monarch when the doors of the House of Commons are slammed in the face of the monarch's messenger, symbolising the rights of Parliament and its independence from the monarch.
With the founding of the Royal Society in 1660, science was greatly encouraged.
Though the Tories initially supported Catholic king James II, some of them, along with the Whigs, during the Revolution of 1688 invited Dutch prince William of Orange to defeat James and ultimately to become William III of England.
Some English people, especially in the north, were Jacobites and continued to support James and his sons.
To accommodate the union, institutions such as the law and national churches of each remained separate.
Late modern and contemporary
Under the newly formed Kingdom of Great Britain, output from the Royal Society and other English initiatives combined with the Scottish Enlightenment to create innovations in science and engineering, while the enormous growth in British overseas trade protected by the Royal Navy paved the way for the establishment of the British Empire.
Domestically it drove the Industrial Revolution, a period of profound change in the socioeconomic and cultural conditions of England, resulting in industrialised agriculture, manufacture, engineering and mining, as well as new and pioneering road, rail and water networks to facilitate their expansion and development.
In 1825 the world's first permanent steam locomotive-hauled passenger railway – the Stockton and Darlington Railway – opened to the public.
During the Industrial Revolution, many workers moved from England's countryside to new and expanding urban industrial areas to work in factories, for instance at Birmingham and Manchester, dubbed "Workshop of the World" and "Warehouse City" respectively.
London became the largest and most populous metropolitan area in the world during the Victorian era, and trade within the British Empire – as well as the standing of the British military and navy – was prestigious.
Power shifts in east-central Europe led to World War I; hundreds of thousands of English soldiers died fighting for the United Kingdom as part of the Allies.
Developments in warfare technology saw many cities damaged by air-raids during the Blitz.
Following the war, the British Empire experienced rapid decolonisation, and there was a speeding up of technological innovations; automobiles became the primary means of transport and Frank Whittle's development of the jet engine led to wider air travel.
Residential patterns were altered in England by private motoring, and by the creation of the National Health Service (NHS) in 1948.
The UK's NHS provided publicly funded health care to all UK permanent residents free at the point of need, being paid for from general taxation.
Combined, these changes prompted the reform of local government in England in the mid-20th century.
Since the 1970s there has been a large move away from manufacturing and an increasing emphasis on the service industry.
England and Wales continues to exist as a jurisdiction within the United Kingdom.
Devolution has stimulated a greater emphasis on a more English-specific identity and patriotism.
There is no devolved English government, but an attempt to create a similar system on a sub-regional basis was rejected by referendum.
Main article: Politics of England
There has not been a government of England since 1707, when the Acts of Union 1707, putting into effect the terms of the Treaty of Union, joined England and Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britain.
In the House of Commons which is the lower house of the British Parliament based at the Palace of Westminster, there are 532 Members of Parliament (MPs) for constituencies in England, out of the 650 total.
As of the 2019 United Kingdom general election, England is represented by 345 MPs from the Conservative Party, 179 from the Labour Party, seven from the Liberal Democrats, one from the Green Party, and the Speaker, Lindsay Hoyle.
Since devolution, in which other countries of the United Kingdom – Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – each have their own devolved parliament or assemblies for local issues, there has been debate about how to counterbalance this in England.
One major issue is the West Lothian question, in which MPs from Scotland and Wales are able to vote on legislation affecting only England, while English MPs have no equivalent right to legislate on devolved matters.
This when placed in the context of England being the only country of the United Kingdom not to have free cancer treatment, prescriptions, residential care for the elderly and free top-up university fees, has led to a steady rise in English nationalism.
Some have suggested the creation of a devolved English parliament, while others have proposed simply limiting voting on legislation which only affects England to English MPs.
Main article: English law
It was created in 2009 after constitutional changes, taking over the judicial functions of the House of Lords.
A decision of the Supreme Court is binding on every other court in the hierarchy, which must follow its directions.
Crime increased between 1981 and 1995 but fell by 42% in the period 1995–2006.
The prison population doubled over the same period, giving it one of highest incarceration rate in Western Europe at 147 per 100,000.
Regions, counties, and districts
Main article: Subdivisions of England
These were created in 1994 as Government Offices, used by the UK government to deliver a wide range of policies and programmes regionally, but there are no elected bodies at this level, except in London, and in 2011 the regional government offices were abolished.
After devolution began to take place in other parts of the United Kingdom it was planned that referendums for the regions of England would take place for their own elected regional assemblies as a counterweight.
However, when the proposal was rejected by the 2004 North East England devolution referendum in the North East, further referendums were cancelled.
Below the regional level, all of England is divided into 48 ceremonial counties.
These are used primarily as a geographical frame of reference and have developed gradually since the Middle Ages, with some established as recently as 1974.
Outside Greater London and the Isles of Scilly, England is also divided into 83 metropolitan and non-metropolitan counties; these correspond to areas used for the purposes of local government and may consist of a single district or be divided into several.
There are six metropolitan counties based on the most heavily urbanised areas, which do not have county councils.
In these areas the principal authorities are the councils of the subdivisions, the metropolitan boroughs.
They are typically, though not always, found in more rural areas.
The remaining non-metropolitan counties are of a single district and usually correspond to large towns or sparsely populated counties; they are known as unitary authorities.
At the most localised level, much of England is divided into civil parishes with councils; in Greater London only one, Queen's Park, exists as of 2014 after they were abolished in 1965 until legislation allowed their recreation in 2007.
Main article: Geography of England
Landscape and rivers
England is closer than any other part of mainland Britain to the European continent.
At 220 miles (350 km), the Severn is the longest river flowing through England.
However, the longest river entirely in England is the Thames, which is 215 miles (346 km) in length.
Most of England's landscape consists of low hills and plains, with upland and mountainous terrain in the north and west of the country.
The northern uplands include the Pennines, a chain of uplands dividing east and west, the Lake District mountains in Cumbria, and the Cheviot Hills, straddling the border between England and Scotland.
The highest point in England, at 978 metres (3,209 ft), is Scafell Pike in the Lake District.
The approximate dividing line between terrain types is often indicated by the Tees-Exe line.
In geological terms, the Pennines, known as the "backbone of England", are the oldest range of mountains in the country, originating from the end of the Paleozoic Era around 300 million years ago.
The Pennine landscape is high moorland in upland areas, indented by fertile valleys of the region's rivers.
The English Lowlands are in the central and southern regions of the country, consisting of green rolling hills, including the Cotswold Hills, Chiltern Hills, North and South Downs; where they meet the sea they form white rock exposures such as the cliffs of Dover.
Main article: Climate of England
The weather is damp relatively frequently and is changeable.
The coldest months are January and February, the latter particularly on the English coast, while July is normally the warmest month.
Months with mild to warm weather are May, June, September and October.
Rainfall is spread fairly evenly throughout the year.
Rainfall is higher in the west, and parts of the Lake District receive more rain than anywhere else in the country.
Since weather records began, the highest temperature recorded was 38.7 °C (101.7 °F) on 25 July 2019 at the Botanic Garden in Cambridge, while the lowest was −26.1 °C (−15.0 °F) on 10 January 1982 in Edgmond, Shropshire.
Nature and wildlife
The fauna of England is similar to that of other areas in the British Isles with a wide range of vertebrate and invertebrate life in a diverse range of habitats.
They were established to protect the most significant areas of habitat and of geological formations.
NNRs are managed on behalf of the nation, many by Natural England themselves, but also by non-governmental organisations, including the members of The Wildlife Trusts partnership, the National Trust, and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.
There are 229 NNRs in England covering 939 square kilometres (363 square miles).
Often they contain rare species or nationally important species of plants and animals.
Towards the North of England the climate becomes colder and most of England's mountains and high hills are located here and have a major impact on the climate and thus the local fauna of the areas.
Deciduous woodlands are common across all of England and provide a great habitat for much of England's wildlife, but these give way in northern and upland areas of England to coniferous forests (mainly plantations) which also benefit certain forms of wildlife.
The fauna of England has to cope with varying temperatures and conditions, although not extreme they do pose potential challenges and adaptational measures.
English fauna has however had to cope with industrialisation, human population densities amongst the highest in Europe and intensive farming, but as England is a developed nation, wildlife and the countryside have entered the English mindset more and the country is very conscientious about preserving its wildlife, environment and countryside.
Grey squirrels introduced from eastern America have forced the decline of the native red squirrel due to competition.
Red squirrels are now confined to upland and coniferous-forested areas of England, mainly in the north, south west and Isle of Wight.
England's climate is very suitable for lagomorphs and the country has rabbits and brown hares which were introduced in Roman times.
Mountain hares which are indigenous have now been re-introduced in Derbyshire.
See also: List of places in England
The Greater London Built-up Area is by far the largest urban area in England and one of the busiest cities in the world.
It is considered a global city and has a population larger than other countries in the United Kingdom besides England itself.
Main article: Economy of England
England's economy is one of the largest and most dynamic in the world, with an average GDP per capita of £28,100 or $36,000.
Taxation in England is quite competitive when compared to much of the rest of Europe – as of 2014 the basic rate of personal tax is 20% on taxable income up to £31,865 above the personal tax-free allowance (normally £10,000), and 40% on any additional earnings above that amount.
London, home to the London Stock Exchange, the United Kingdom's main stock exchange and the largest in Europe, is England's financial centre, with 100 of Europe's 500 largest corporations being based there.
London is the largest financial centre in Europe, and as of 2014 is the second largest in the world.
Manchester is the largest financial and professional services sector outside London and is the mid tier private equity capital of Europe as well as one of the growing technology hubs of Europe.
Originally established as private banker to the government of England, since 1946 it has been a state-owned institution.
The bank has a monopoly on the issue of banknotes in England and Wales, although not in other parts of the United Kingdom.
The government has devolved responsibility to the bank's Monetary Policy Committee for managing the monetary policy of the country and setting interest rates.
England is highly industrialised, but since the 1970s there has been a decline in traditional heavy and manufacturing industries, and an increasing emphasis on a more service industry oriented economy.
Tourism has become a significant industry, attracting millions of visitors to England each year.
The export part of the economy is dominated by pharmaceuticals, cars (although many English marques are now foreign-owned, such as Land Rover, Lotus, Jaguar and Bentley), crude oil and petroleum from the English parts of North Sea oil along with Wytch Farm, aircraft engines and alcoholic beverages.
Most of the UK's £30 billion aerospace industry is primarily based in England.
The global market opportunity for UK aerospace manufacturers over the next two decades is estimated at £3.5 trillion.
It is also a principal subcontractor on the F35 Joint Strike Fighter – the world's largest single defence project – for which it designs and manufactures a range of components including the aft fuselage, vertical and horizontal tail and wing tips and fuel system.
It also manufactures the Hawk, the world's most successful jet training aircraft.
Its engines power more than 30 types of commercial aircraft, and it has more 30,000 engines currently in service across both the civil and defence sectors.
With a workforce of over 12,000 people, Derby has the largest concentration of Rolls-Royce employees in the UK.
Rolls-Royce also produces low-emission power systems for ships; makes critical equipment and safety systems for the nuclear industry and powers offshore platforms and major pipelines for the oil and gas industry.
The world leader in compact satellite systems, Surrey Satellite Technology, is also part of Astrium.
Reaction Engines Limited, the company planning to build Skylon, a single-stage-to-orbit spaceplane using their SABRE rocket engine, a combined-cycle, air-breathing rocket propulsion system is based Culham.
Agriculture is intensive and highly mechanised, producing 60% of food needs with only 2% of the labour force.
Two-thirds of production is devoted to livestock, the other to arable crops.
England is one of the world's leading fishing nations.
Science and technology
As the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, England was home to many significant inventors during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
Famous English engineers include Isambard Kingdom Brunel, best known for the creation of the Great Western Railway, a series of famous steamships, and numerous important bridges, hence revolutionising public transport and modern-day engineering.
With his role in the marketing and manufacturing of the steam engine, and invention of modern coinage, Matthew Boulton (business partner of James Watt) is regarded as one of the most influential entrepreneurs in history.
Inventions and discoveries of the English include: the jet engine, the first industrial spinning machine, the first computer and the first modern computer, the World Wide Web along with HTML, the first successful human blood transfusion, the motorised vacuum cleaner, the lawn mower, the seat belt, the hovercraft, the electric motor, steam engines, and theories such as the Darwinian theory of evolution and atomic theory.
Other inventions include the iron plate railway, the thermosiphon, tarmac, the rubber band, the mousetrap, "cat's eye" road marker, joint development of the light bulb, steam locomotives, the modern seed drill and many modern techniques and technologies used in precision engineering.
Main article: Transport in England
The Department for Transport is the government body responsible for overseeing transport in England.
England has a dense and modern transportation infrastructure.
There are many motorways in England, and many other trunk roads, such as the A1 Great North Road, which runs through eastern England from London to Newcastle (much of this section is motorway) and onward to the Scottish border.
Other major routes include: the M1 from London to Leeds, the M25 which encircles London, the M60 which encircles Manchester, the M4 from London to South Wales, the M62 from Liverpool via Manchester to East Yorkshire, and the M5 from Birmingham to Bristol and the South West.
The red double-decker buses in London have become a symbol of England.
National Cycle Route offers cycling routes nationally.
Rail transport in England is the oldest in the world: passenger railways originated in England in 1825.
Much of Britain's 10,000 miles (16,000 km) of rail network lies in England, covering the country fairly extensively, although a high proportion of railway lines were closed in the second half of the 20th century.
There are plans to reopen lines such as the Varsity Line between Oxford and Cambridge.
There is rail transport access to France and Belgium through an undersea rail link, the Channel Tunnel, which was completed in 1994.
Crossrail, under construction in London, is Europe's largest construction project with a £15 billion projected cost.
High Speed 2, a new high-speed north–south railway line, projected in 2015 to cost £56 billion, but estimated in 2020 to be almost double that figure, is to start being built in 2020.
England has extensive domestic and international aviation links.
The largest airport is Heathrow, which is the world's busiest airport measured by number of international passengers.
By sea there is ferry transport, both local and international, including from Liverpool to Ireland and the Isle of Man, and Hull to the Netherlands and Belgium.
There are around 4,400 miles (7,100 km) of navigable waterways in England, half of which is owned by the Canal & River Trust, however, water transport is very limited.
Main article: Energy in the United Kingdom
Successive UK governments have outlined numerous commitments to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
One such announcement was the Low Carbon Transition Plan launched by the Brown ministry in July 2009, which aimed to generate 30% electricity from renewable sources, and 40% from low carbon content fuels by 2020.
Notably, the UK is one of the best sites in Europe for wind energy, and wind power production is its fastest growing supply.
Wind power contributed 15% of UK electricity generation in 2017.
Government commitments to reduce emissions are occurring against a backdrop of economic crisis across Europe.
During the European financial crisis, Europe's consumption of electricity shrank by 5%, with primary production also facing a noticeable decline.
Britain's trade deficit was reduced by 8% due to substantial cuts in energy imports.
Between 2007 and 2015, the UK's peak electrical demand fell from 61.5 GW to 52.7.GW.
Shifting availabilities of resources and development of technologies also change the country's energy mix through changes in costs.
Main article: Tourism in England
English Heritage is a governmental body with a broad remit of managing the historic sites, artefacts and environments of England.
It is currently sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.
The National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty is a charity which also maintains multiple sites.
Of the 25 United Kingdom UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 17 are in England.
Some of the best known of these include Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites, Tower of London, Jurassic Coast, Westminster, Roman Baths in Bath, Saltaire, Ironbridge Gorge, and Studley Royal Park.
The northernmost point of the Roman Empire, Hadrian's Wall, is the largest Roman artefact anywhere: it runs for a total of 73 miles in northern England.
Entry to most state-supported museums and galleries is free unlike in other countries.
English cities such as York, Oxford, Cambridge, Canterbury, Durham and Bath and their associated cultural sites are widely visited.
Main article: Healthcare in England
The NHS began on 5 July 1948, putting into effect the provisions of the National Health Service Act 1946.
The NHS is largely funded from general taxation including National Insurance payments, and it provides most of its services free at the point of use, although there are charges for some people for eye tests, dental care, prescriptions and aspects of personal care.
Most of the expenditure of the Department of Health is spent on the NHS—£98.6 billion was spent in 2008–2009.
In recent years the private sector has been increasingly used to provide more NHS services despite opposition by doctors and trade unions.
When purchasing drugs, the NHS has significant market power that, based on its own assessment of the fair value of the drugs, influences the global price, typically keeping prices lower.
Several other countries either copy the U.K.'s model or directly rely on Britain's assessments for their own decisions on state-financed drug reimbursements.
The South of England has a higher life expectancy than the North, however, regional differences do seem to be slowly narrowing: between 1991–1993 and 2012–2014, life expectancy in the North East increased by 6.0 years and in the North West by 5.8 years, the fastest increase in any region outside London, and the gap between life expectancy in the North East and South East is now 2.5 years, down from 2.9 in 1993.
Main article: Demography of England
Main article: English people
With over 53 million inhabitants, England is by far the most populous country of the United Kingdom, accounting for 84% of the combined total.
England taken as a unit and measured against international states has the fourth largest population in the European Union and would be the 25th largest country by population in the world.
With a density of 424 people per square kilometre, it would be the second most densely populated country in the European Union after Malta.
Some genetic evidence suggests that 75–95% descend in the paternal line from prehistoric settlers who originally came from the Iberian Peninsula, as well as a 5% contribution from Angles and Saxons, and a significant Scandinavian (Viking) element.
However, other geneticists place the Germanic estimate up to half.
Since the late 1990s, many English people have migrated to Spain.
In 1086, when the Domesday Book was compiled, England had a population of two million.
About 10% lived in urban areas.
By 1801, the population was 8.3 million, and by 1901 30.5 million.
Due in particular to the economic prosperity of South East England, it has received many economic migrants from the other parts of the United Kingdom.
There has been significant Irish migration.
Other people from much further afield in the former British colonies have arrived since the 1950s: in particular, 6% of people living in England have family origins in the Indian subcontinent, mostly India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
2.90% of the population are black, from Africa and the Caribbean, especially former British colonies.
There is a significant number of Chinese and British Chinese.
In 2007, 22% of primary school children in England were from ethnic minority families, and in 2011 that figure was 26.5%.
About half of the population increase between 1991 and 2001 was due to immigration.
Debate over immigration is politically prominent; 80% of respondents in a 2009 Home Office poll wanted to cap it.
The ONS has projected that the population will grow by nine million between 2014 and 2039.
England contains one indigenous national minority, the Cornish people, recognised by the UK government under the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities in 2014.
As its name suggests, the English language, today spoken by hundreds of millions of people around the world, originated as the language of England, where it remains the principal tongue spoken by 98% of the population.
By the 15th century, English was back in fashion among all classes, though much changed; the Middle English form showed many signs of French influence, both in vocabulary and spelling.
During the English Renaissance, many words were coined from Latin and Greek origins.
Modern English has extended this custom of flexibility when it comes to incorporating words from different languages.
Despite the country's relatively small size, there are many distinct regional accents, and individuals with particularly strong accents may not be easily understood everywhere in the country.
Cornish died out as a community language in the 18th century but is being revived, and is now protected under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages.
It is spoken by 0.1% of people in Cornwall, and is taught to some degree in several primary and secondary schools.
When the modern border between Wales and England was established by the Laws in Wales Acts 1535 and 1542, many Welsh-speaking communities found themselves on the English side of the border.
However, following the 2011 census data released by the Office for National Statistics, figures now show that Polish is the main language spoken in England after English.
Main article: Religion in England
Further information: History of Christianity in England
In the 2011 census, 59.4% of the population of England specified their religion as Christian, 24.7% answered that they had no religion, 5% specified that they were Muslim, while 3.7% of the population belongs to other religions and 7.2% did not give an answer.
Christianity is the most widely practised religion in England, as it has been since the Early Middle Ages, although it was first introduced much earlier in Gaelic and Roman times.
The church regards itself as both Catholic and Protestant.
The monarch of the United Kingdom is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England, which has around 26 million baptised members (of whom the vast majority are not regular churchgoers).
The 2nd-largest Christian practice is the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church.
The patron saint of England is Saint George; his symbolic cross is included in the flag of England, as well as in the Union Flag as part of a combination.
There are many other English and associated saints; some of the best-known are: Cuthbert, Edmund, Alban, Wilfrid, Aidan, Edward the Confessor, John Fisher, Thomas More, Petroc, Piran, Margaret Clitherow and Thomas Becket.
There are non-Christian religions practised.
Jews have a history of a small minority on the island since 1070.
They were expelled from England in 1290 following the Edict of Expulsion, only to be allowed back in 1656.
Especially since the 1950s, religions from the former British colonies have grown in numbers, due to immigration.
Islam is the most common of these, now accounting for around 5% of the population in England.
A small minority of the population practise ancient Pagan religions.
24.7% of people in England declared no religion in 2011, compared with 14.6% in 2001.
These figures are slightly lower than the combined figures for England and Wales as Wales has a higher level of irreligion than England.
Main article: Education in England
The Department for Education is the government department responsible for issues affecting people in England up to the age of 19, including education.
State-run and state-funded schools are attended by approximately 93% of English schoolchildren.
Children who are between the ages of 3 and 5 attend nursery or an Early Years Foundation Stage reception unit within a primary school.
Children between the ages of 5 and 11 attend primary school, and secondary school is attended by those aged between 11 and 16.
State-funded schools are obliged by law to teach the National Curriculum; basic areas of learning include English literature, English language, mathematics, science, citizenship, history, geography, religious education, art & design, design & technology, ancient & modern languages, computing, music, and physical education.
More than 90% of English schools require students to wear uniforms.
School uniforms are defined by individual schools, within the constraint that uniform regulations must not discriminate on the grounds of sex, race, disability, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief.
Schools may choose to permit trousers for girls or religious dress.
The Programme for International Student Assessment coordinated by the OECD currently ranks the overall knowledge and skills of British 15-year-olds as 13th in the world in reading literacy, mathematics, and science with the average British student scoring 503.7, compared with the OECD average of 493, ahead of the United States and most of Europe.
Around 7.2 per cent of English schoolchildren attend private schools, which are funded by private sources.
After finishing compulsory education, students take GCSE examinations.
Students may then opt to continue into further education for two years.
A-level examinations are sat by a large number of further education students, and often form the basis of an application to university.
Higher education students normally attend university from age 18 onwards, where they study for an academic degree.
There are over 90 universities in England, all but one of which are public institutions.
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills is the government department responsible for higher education in England.
The first degree offered to undergraduates is the Bachelor's degree, which usually takes three years to complete.
Students are then able to work towards a postgraduate degree, which usually takes one year, or towards a doctorate, which takes three or more years.
England's universities include some of the highest-ranked universities in the world; University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, Imperial College London, University College London and King's College London are all ranked in the global top 30 in the 2018 QS World University Rankings.
The London School of Economics has been described as the world's leading social science institution for both teaching and research.
Academic degrees in England are usually split into classes: first class (1st), upper second class (2:1), lower second class (2:2), third (3rd), and unclassified.
Main article: Culture of England
Further information: English Renaissance
With the introduction of Ancient Roman architecture there was a development of basilicas, baths, amphitheaters, triumphal arches, villas, Roman temples, Roman roads, Roman forts, stockades and aqueducts.
It was the Romans who founded the first cities and towns such as London, Bath, York, Chester and St Albans.
Perhaps the best-known example is Hadrian's Wall stretching right across northern England.
Ecclesiastical architecture ranged from a synthesis of Hiberno–Saxon monasticism, to Early Christian basilica and architecture characterised by pilaster-strips, blank arcading, baluster shafts and triangular headed openings.
After the Norman conquest in 1066 various Castles in England were created so law lords could uphold their authority and in the north to protect from invasion.
In the aftermath of the Renaissance a form of architecture echoing classical antiquity synthesised with Christianity appeared, the English Baroque style of architect Christopher Wren being particularly championed.
In addition to this, around the same time the Industrial Revolution paved the way for buildings such as The Crystal Palace.
Since the 1930s various modernist forms have appeared whose reception is often controversial, though traditionalist resistance movements continue with support in influential places.
Gardening, visiting gardens, and a love for gardens are regarded as typically English pursuits.
The English garden presented an idealized view of nature.
At large country houses, the English garden usually included lakes, sweeps of gently rolling lawns set against groves of trees, and recreations of classical temples, Gothic ruins, bridges, and other picturesque architecture, designed to recreate an idyllic pastoral landscape.
It also had a major influence on the form of the public parks and gardens which appeared around the world in the 19th century.
The English landscape garden was centred on the English country house and stately homes.
The Chelsea Flower Show is held every year and is said to be the largest gardening show in the world.
Main article: English folklore
English folklore developed over many centuries.
Some of the characters and stories are present across England, but most belong to specific regions.
Some folk figures are based on semi or actual historical people whose story has been passed down centuries; Lady Godiva for instance was said to have ridden naked on horseback through Coventry, Hereward the Wake was a heroic English figure resisting the Norman invasion, Herne the Hunter is an equestrian ghost associated with Windsor Forest and Great Park and Mother Shipton is the archetypal witch.
There are various national and regional folk activities, participated in to this day, such as Morris dancing, Maypole dancing, Rapper sword in the North East, Long Sword dance in Yorkshire, Mummers Plays, bottle-kicking in Leicestershire, and cheese-rolling at Cooper's Hill.
Main article: English cuisine
Since the early modern period the food of England has historically been characterised by its simplicity of approach and a reliance on the high quality of natural produce.
During the Middle Ages and through the Renaissance period, English cuisine enjoyed an excellent reputation, though a decline began during the Industrial Revolution with the move away from the land and increasing urbanisation of the populace.
Lancashire hotpot is a well-known stew originating in the northwest.
Common non-alcoholic drinks include tea, the popularity of which was increased by Catherine of Braganza, and coffee; frequently consumed alcoholic drinks include wine, ciders and English beers, such as bitter, mild, stout and brown ale.
Main article: English art
See also: Arts Council England
With the arrival of Roman culture in the 1st century, various forms of art such as statues, busts, glasswork and mosaics were the norm.
During the Early Middle Ages the style favoured sculpted crosses and ivories, manuscript painting, gold and enamel jewellery, demonstrating a love of intricate, interwoven designs such as in the Staffordshire Hoard discovered in 2009.
The Tudor era saw prominent artists as part of their court, portrait painting which would remain an enduring part of English art, was boosted by German Hans Holbein, natives such as Nicholas Hilliard built on this.
The 18th century was a time of significance with the founding of the Royal Academy, a classicism based on the High Renaissance prevailed, with Thomas Gainsborough and Joshua Reynolds becoming two of England's most treasured artists.
The Norwich School continued the landscape tradition, while the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, led by artists such as Holman Hunt, Dante Gabriel Rossetti and John Everett Millais, revived the Early Renaissance style with their vivid and detailed style.
Prominent amongst 20th-century artists was Henry Moore, regarded as the voice of British sculpture, and of British modernism in general.
Literature, poetry, and philosophy
Main article: English literature
More radical elements were later countered by Edmund Burke who is regarded as the founder of conservatism.
The poet Alexander Pope with his satirical verse became well regarded.
In response to the Industrial Revolution, agrarian writers sought a way between liberty and tradition; William Cobbett, G. and K. ChestertonHilaire Belloc were main exponents, while the founder of guild socialism, Arthur Penty, and cooperative movement advocate G. are somewhat related. D. H. Cole
Since then England has continued to produce novelists such as George Orwell, D. , H. LawrenceVirginia Woolf, C. , S. LewisEnid Blyton, Aldous Huxley, Agatha Christie, Terry Pratchett, J. , and R. R. TolkienJ. . K. Rowling
Further information: Folk music of England
See also: Music of the United Kingdom
It has its own distinct variations and regional peculiarities.
Many nursery rhymes are of English origin such as Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary, Roses are red, Jack and Jill, London Bridge Is Falling Down, The Grand Old Duke of York, Hey Diddle Diddle and Humpty Dumpty.
German-born George Frideric Handel spent most of his composing life in London and became a national icon in Britain, creating some of the most well-known works of classical music, especially his English oratorios, The Messiah, Solomon, Water Music, and Music for the Royal Fireworks.
One of his four Coronation Anthems, Zadok the Priest, composed for the coronation of George II, has been performed at every subsequent British coronation, traditionally during the sovereign's anointing.
In the field of popular music, many English bands and solo artists have been cited as the most influential and best-selling musicians of all time.
Many musical genres have origins in (or strong associations with) England, such as British invasion, progressive rock, hard rock, Mod, glam rock, heavy metal, Britpop, indie rock, gothic rock, shoegazing, acid house, garage, trip hop, drum and bass and dubstep.
The Royal Ballet is one of the world's foremost classical ballet companies, its reputation built on two prominent figures of 20th-century dance, prima ballerina Margot Fonteyn and choreographer Frederick Ashton.
It is the largest open-air Asian festival in Europe.
See also: Cinema of the United Kingdom
England (and the UK as a whole) has had a considerable influence on the history of the cinema, producing some of the greatest actors, directors and motion pictures of all time, including Alfred Hitchcock, Charlie Chaplin, David Lean, Laurence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, John Gielgud, Peter Sellers, Julie Andrews, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Helen Mirren, Kate Winslet and Daniel Day-Lewis.
Hitchcock and Lean are among the most critically acclaimed filmmakers.
Hitchcock's first thriller, The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (1926), helped shape the thriller genre in film, while his 1929 film, Blackmail, is often regarded as the first British sound feature film.
Ealing Studios in London has a claim to being the oldest continuously working film studio in the world.
English producers are also active in international co-productions and English actors, directors and crew feature regularly in American films.
The visual effects company Framestore in London has produced some of the most critically acclaimed special effects in modern film.
Many successful Hollywood films have been based on English people, stories or events.
Museums, libraries, and galleries
Further information: List of museums in England
English Heritage is a governmental body with a broad remit of managing the historic sites, artefacts and environments of England.
It is currently sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.
The charity National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty holds a contrasting role.
17 of the 25 United Kingdom UNESCO World Heritage Sites fall within England.
There are many museums in England, but perhaps the most notable is London's British Museum.
Its collection of more than seven million objects is one of the largest and most comprehensive in the world, sourced from every continent, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its beginning to the present.
The British Library in London is the national library and is one of the world's largest research libraries, holding over 150 million items in almost all known languages and formats; including around 25 million books.
Main article: Sport in England
England has a strong sporting heritage, and during the 19th century codified many sports that are now played around the world.
Sports originating in England include association football, cricket, rugby union, rugby league, tennis, boxing, badminton, squash, rounders, hockey, snooker, billiards, darts, table tennis, bowls, netball, thoroughbred horseracing, greyhound racing and fox hunting.
Football is the most popular of these sports.
With a British television audience peak of 32.30 million viewers, the final is the most watched television event ever in the UK.
At club level, England is recognised by FIFA as the birthplace of club football, due to Sheffield F.C. founded in 1857 being the world's oldest club.
In the modern day, the Premier League is the world's most-watched football league, most lucrative, and amongst the elite.
As is the case throughout the UK, football in England is notable for the rivalries between clubs and the passion of the supporters, which includes a tradition of football chants.
The most successful English football team in the European Cup/UEFA Champions League is Liverpool F.C. who have won the competition on six occasions.
Other English success has come from Manchester United F.C., winning the competition on 3 occasions; Nottingham Forest F.C. on 2 occasions, Aston Villa F.C. and Chelsea F.C. have both won the trophy once.
The England cricket team is a composite England and Wales, team.
The climax of the 2005 Ashes was viewed by 7.4 million as it was available on terrestrial television.
Lord's Cricket Ground situated in London is sometimes referred to as the "Mecca of Cricket".
In 1994, then President of the IOC, Juan Antonio Samaranch, laid a wreath on Brooke's grave, and said, "I came to pay homage and tribute to Dr Brookes, who really was the founder of the modern Olympic Games".
England competes in the Commonwealth Games, held every four years.
Sport England is the governing body responsible for distributing funds and providing strategic guidance for sporting activity in England.
The top level of club participation is the English Premiership.
The vast majority of English clubs in Super League are based in the north of England.
The world's oldest golf tournament, and golf's first major is The Open Championship, played both in England and Scotland.
Nick Faldo is the most successful Ryder Cup player ever, having won the most points (25) of any player on either the European or US teams.
Wimbledon is a tournament that has a major place in the British cultural calendar.
Fred Perry was the last Englishman to win Wimbledon in 1936.
It is the most watched horse race in the UK, attracting casual observers, and three-time winner Red Rum is the most successful racehorse in the event's history.
Red Rum is also the best-known racehorse in the country.
Since then, England has produced some of the greatest drivers in the sport, including; John Surtees, Stirling Moss, Graham Hill (only driver to have won the Triple Crown), Nigel Mansell (only man to hold F1 and IndyCar titles at the same time), Damon Hill, Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button.
It has manufactured some of the most technically advanced racing cars, and many of today's racing companies choose England as their base of operations for its engineering knowledge and organisation.
England also has a rich heritage in Grand Prix motorcycle racing, the premier championship of motorcycle road racing, and produced several World Champions across all the various class of motorcycle: Mike Hailwood, John Surtees, Phil Read, Geoff Duke, and Barry Sheene.
The sport is governed by the World Darts Federation, one of its member organisations is the British Darts Organisation (BDO), which annually stages the BDO World Darts Championship, the other being the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC), which runs its own world championship at Alexandra Palace in London.
Trina Gulliver is the ten-time Women's World Professional Darts Champion of the British Darts Organisation.
The English are keen sailors and enjoy competitive sailing; founding and winning some of the world's most famous and respected international competitive tournaments across the various race formats, including the match race, a regatta, and the America's Cup.
England has produced some of the world's greatest sailors, including Francis Chichester, Herbert Hasler, John Ridgway, Robin Knox-Johnston, Ellen MacArthur, Mike Golding, Paul Goodison, and the most successful Olympic sailor ever Ben Ainslie.
Main article: National symbols of England
The St George's Cross has been the national flag of England since the 13th century.
Originally the flag was used by the maritime Republic of Genoa.
The English monarch paid a tribute to the Doge of Genoa from 1190 onwards so that English ships could fly the flag as a means of protection when entering the Mediterranean.
A red cross was a symbol for many Crusaders in the 12th and 13th centuries.
The Tudor rose was adopted as a national emblem of England around the time of the Wars of the Roses as a symbol of peace.
It is also known as the Rose of England.
The oak tree is a symbol of England, representing strength and endurance.
The Royal Oak symbol and Oak Apple Day commemorate the escape of King Charles II from the grasp of the parliamentarians after his father's execution: he hid in an oak tree to avoid detection before safely reaching exile.
England does not have an official designated national anthem, as the United Kingdom as a whole has God Save the Queen.
However, the following are often considered unofficial English national anthems: Jerusalem, Land of Hope and Glory (used for England during the 2002 Commonwealth Games), and I Vow to Thee, My Country.
Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/England.