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The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Where is the UK?

UK MapThe UK is situated north-west of the European continent between the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea. It has a total land area of 244,100 square kilometres, of which nearly 99% is land and the remainder inland water. From north to south it is about 1,000 kilometres long.

The UK part of Europe and is a member of the European Union (EU).

Click here to find out about the Geography of the UK

What is the official name of the UK?

The official name of the UK is the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".

The name refers to the union of what were once four separate nations: England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland (though most of Ireland is now independent).

The United Kingdom is made up of:

What is the capital city of the UK?

The capital of the UK is London.

Interactive Map of the UK

Why is the whole of Ireland not in the UK?

Before 1922 the UK included Ireland in the definition, but when the Irish Free State ceased to be part of the Union the title changed to include 'Northern Ireland'.

When was the UK formed (made)?

The United Kingdom (UK) was formed in on January 1, 1801 and constitutes the greater part of the British Isles.

What are people called in the UK?

People in the UK are called British although they have different nationalities.

Find out more

Union flagThe Union Flag, popularly known as the Union Jack, symbolises the union of the countries of the UK. It is made up of the individual flags of three countries in the Kingdom. Read more

The Story of the Making of the United Kingdom

The present Union Flag (Union Jack) represents the political union of three kingdoms

  • England,
  • Scotland and
  • Ireland.


The story of how the UK was formed can be told through the making of the Union Flag, the flag of the United Kingdom.

Visit our Making of the Union Flag pages

Other pages about the UK

Quick facts about the UK

Geography of the UK

Nationalities of the British

Find out about the British Isles

Way of Life in the UK ¦ The People ¦ Royal Family ¦

What is the British Isles?


Questions about Great Britain

What is Great Britain?
Is Britain the same as Great Britain?
Which countries are in Great Britain?

Questions about England

Why does England dominate the UK? next


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Events and special days in the UK
British Life
Pooh down the River Thames

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All the materials on these pages are free for homework and classroom use only. You may not redistribute, sell or place the content of this page on any other website or blog without written permission from Mandy Barrow.

© Copyright Mandy Barrow 2013

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Mandy is the creator of the Woodlands Resources section of the Woodlands Junior website. 
The two websites and are the new homes for the Woodlands Resources.

Mandy left Woodlands in 2003 to work in Kent schools as an ICT Consulatant. 
She now teaches computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.