Eurosport is a pan-European television sports network and operated by Discovery, Inc. Discovery took a 20% minority interest share in December 2012, became the majority shareholder in the Eurosport venture with TF1 in January 2014, taking a 51% share of the company. On 22 July 2015 Discovery agreed to acquire TF1's remaining 49% stake in the venture. Eurosport owns a wide range of rights across many sports but does not bid for premium priced rights such as those to major football leagues. However, in 2015 it was awarded rights to broadcast the Olympic Games from 2018 for most of Europe and 2022 for the UK and France in a deal worth €1.3 billion. It transmits much of the same footage across many markets, using unseen commentators rather than on-screen presenters so that the same visual feed may be broadcast in multiple languages while holding down production costs. Eurosport has expanded its deal with The All England Club to show all the Wimbledon matches live in 16 additional countries, it is a 3-year deal that includes digital rights.
This expands their tennis portfolio to show all four Grand Slams. The network of channels is available in 54 countries, in 20 different languages, providing viewers with European and international sporting events. Eurosport first launched on European satellites on 5 February 1989. In the 1990s, Eurosport timeshared with The Quantum Channel. In February 2017, Discovery launched the channel in India, branded as DSport; the channel was made available on various platforms in both HD feeds. Eurosport provides viewers with international sporting events, it broadcasts different sporting events in each region. This includes several football competitions: Bundesliga Premier League English Football League EFL Cup Coupe de France Ekstraklasa UEFA Nations League UEFA Europa League UEFA Women's Championship UEFA Women's Champions League Major League Soccer CAF African Cup of Nations AFC Asian Cup FIFA U-20 World Cup, FIFA Women's World Cup, FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup and FIFA Futsal World CupOther sports events include the Paris Dakar Rally, Monte Carlo Rally, athletics events such as World Athletics Championships and the European Athletics Championships, cycling events such as the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia and the Vuelta a España, tennis events including the French Open, Australian Open, the US Open, the World Championship Snooker, National Hockey League, World Boxing Super Series, action sports like skating and surfing.
In June 2015 it was announced that Eurosport had secured the pan-European rights to the winter and summer Olympic Games between 2018 and 2024. In July 2017 Eurosport had secured the domestic and international rights from 2017 to 2020 of the Italian Lega Basket Serie A. Eurosport is the new owner of the pay TV, international and internet rights. Eurosport has TV rights for Italian Basketball Supercup and Italian Basketball Cup. In October 2018, Eurosport has reached an agreement with the World Boxing Super Series for the exclusive acquisition of the Competition's broadcast rights in SpainIn October 2018, Eurosport sealed a 3-year deal to show British Darts Organisation major events BDO World Darts Championship, World Masters & World Trophy In January 2019 it was announced that Eurosport will screen 39 ATP tennis tournaments including the tour finals in Russia for 3 years. Eurosport Events is the Eurosport group's sporting events management/promotion/production division, which promotes the FIA World Touring Car Championship, the FIA European Touring Car Cup and the FIA European Rally Championship.
Eurosport Events was the promoter of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, a rival rallying series to the World Rally Championship. The IRC ceased at the end of the 2012 season, with Eurosport taking over series promotion of the ERC from 2013. Since 2008, the Eurosport Group has been broadcasting the annual 24 Hours of Le Mans in full. Eurosport airs MotoGP and Superbike World Championship in various territories including the Netherlands, Romania and Germany, On 29 September 2015, Eurosport acquired the Portuguese broadcasting rights for Formula One between 2016 and 2018. Region-specific events are noted in the table below with a flag indicating the country it is broadcast in. If no flag is present, the broadcast is multi territory. ^1 - via DSport Prior to the creation of Eurosport, the European Broadcasting Union was acquiring substantial amounts of sports rights, yet its members were only able to broadcast a fraction of them. This provided the impetus for setting up the Eurosport Consortium, made up of several EBU members, to establish an outlet where these rights could be exploited.
Sky Television plc was chosen as a commercial partner, the channel launched on 5 February 1989. Eurosport was closed down in May 1991 after the competing Screensport channel had filed a complaint to the European Commission over the corporate structure; the channel was however saved. A new Eurosport channel was able to start its broadcasts the same month. On 1 March 1993, the satellite channel Screensport merged with Eurosport. Eurosport came under a French consortium comprising the TF1 Group, Ca
The Oxford Union Society referred to as the Oxford Union, is a debating society in the city of Oxford, whose membership is drawn from the University of Oxford. Founded in 1823, it is one of Britain's oldest University Unions; the Oxford Union exists independently from the University and is separate from the Oxford University Student Union. The Oxford Union has a tradition of hosting some of the world's most prominent individuals across politics and popular culture, including US Presidents Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton, British Prime Ministers Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, David Cameron and Theresa May, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, activists Malcolm X, Dalai Lama and Mother Teresa, actor Morgan Freeman, musicians Sir Elton John and Michael Jackson and sportspeople Diego Maradona and Manny Pacquiao; the University university restricted junior members from discussing certain issues. Although such restrictions have since been lifted, the Oxford Union has remained separate from and independent of the University, is constitutionally bound to remain so.
Only members of Oxford University are eligible to become life members of the Union, but students at certain other educational institutions are entitled to join for the duration of their time in Oxford, including: Magna Carta College Oxford Brookes University Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies Ripon College, Cuddesdon Ruskin College Sarah Lawrence ProgrammeShorter membership is extended to those participating in some visiting study programmes in Oxford as well as staff members of the University of Oxford or any of its colleges or Permanent Private Halls. Residential memberships are available to Oxford residents who are not from the university, but only if they are deemed worthy by a full meeting of officers of the Union; the Union buildings are owned by a separate charitable trust, the Oxford Literary and Debating Union Trust. The Oxford Union buildings are located in Frewin Court, off Cornmarket Street, on St Michael's Street; the original Union buildings were designed by Benjamin Woodward and opened in 1857.
The society soon outgrew these premises and commissioned Alfred Waterhouse to design a free-standing debating chamber in the gardens, opened in 1879. This was about a decade after the completion of the Cambridge Union's premises designed by Waterhouse, the exterior of the two buildings is similar; the original Woodward debating chamber is now known as "The Old Library". The Old Library is best known for its Pre-Raphaelite paintings by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Edward Burne-Jones and William Morris, referred to as the Oxford Union murals; the current debating chamber, several further extensions to the main buildings were added over the next forty years. The final extension was designed in a conventional Gothic Revival style by Walter Mills and Thorpe and built in 1910-11, it provides the MacMillan Room as well as the Goodman Library, underneath which there are basement library stacks. The Union consists of a Bar on the ground floor, the Morris Room and Snooker Room on the first floor, a Members' TV Room on the third floor, along with separate offices for the President, Librarian and Secretary.
Many of the rooms in the Union are named after figures from the Union's past, such as the Goodman Library, with its oriel windows, the wood-panelled MacMillan Room with barrel ceiling. The buildings have been added to with paintings and statues of past presidents and prominent members; the Old Library contains a fireplace situated in the middle of the floor, with a concealed flue, a rare design of which only a handful of examples survive in the UK. In the debating chamber there are busts of such notables as Roy Jenkins, Edward Heath, Michael Heseltine, George Curzon, 1st Marquess Curzon of Kedleston and William Ewart Gladstone. There is a grand piano in the debating chamber known as the "Bartlet-Jones Piano" after the Oxford University Music Society president who found it dusty and forgotten in a cupboard in the Holywell Music Room and placed it on permanent loan to the Union; the piano was unveiled by Vladimir Ashkenazy, who famously refused to play it in front of the packed chamber because he "had not warmed up".
The despatch boxes which continue to be used in Union debates are modelled on those in the House of Commons, were offered to the House during World War II. As as the 1970s the Oxford Union still provided a full silver service dining room for its members, which like its famous bar was the afternoon and evening venue of choice for many of the university's leading undergraduate journalists and politicos. To be invited to dine at the large table in the bay window, the usual domain of the Union's president, was considered the acme of attainment in that particular sphere of the university, it was said more plots were hatched around that particular table on a regular evening than in the Houses of Parliament on Bonfire Night. The Union's two libraries were extensively used by that same cadre of undergraduates studying humanities, who were rushing at the last minute to complete the obligatory weekly essay for their formal university education; the Union's buildings were used as a location for the films Oxford Blues and The Madness of King George.
Debating at the Oxford Union takes two forms — competitive debating and chamber debating. Competitive debating offers members of the Union debate workshops and a platform upon which to practice and improve their debating skills; the Union's best debaters compete internationally against other top debating societies, the Oxford Union fields one of
Treasure Hunt (UK game show)
Treasure Hunt was a UK game show, based on the format of the French show La Chasse au Trésor, created by Jacques Antoine. It appeared on Channel 4 between 28 December 1982 and 18 May 1989 and was revived by BBC Two between 16 December 2002 and 2 August 2003. A team of two contestants in the studio had to use a library of maps and reference materials to solve up to five clues, communicate instructions via a radio link to a skyrunner who had the use of a helicopter. Although viewers could see the skyrunner, the contestants could not, all communication between them was by sound only; the contestants were given the first clue for free, the solving of which would lead to the location of the second clue and so on until a trinket or other significant object was found by solving the final clue. The contestants won a higher cash prize each time; this was all done against the clock. Once the contestants had solved the final clue, the skyrunner still had to confirm they were correct, by reaching the final target.
On a few occasions, the contestants solved all five clues with time to spare, in which case, a bonus clue was given to the contestants. This resulted in their winning a bottle of champagne; the skyrunner and helicopter did not have freedom to land anywhere they wished. Although the pilot could to an extent request permission from airspace authorities to fly off-course, as happened on occasions, landings needed to be agreed in advance with landowners of a suitable location near the clue. On occasions the helicopter would land in a marked out area at public places. Kenneth Kendall always stressed that he did not know the clues and locations in advance, any help that he gave the contestants was from his own knowledge. According to a "making of Treasure Hunt" programme, Anneka Rice was confined to the hotel on the day that the cameraman, video recordist and helicopter pilot undertook a rehearsal, so she had no advance knowledge of the locations; this did not stop her carrying out research about the general area in order to have a stock of facts to fill in any silences that might arise while the contestants were thinking.
In the original version, the presenter was former BBC newsreader Kenneth Kendall and the "skyrunner" was broadcaster Anneka Rice. In the first series, Kendall was joined in the studio for the handover of the first clue by the original clue-setter, Ann Meo, she would rejoin the contestants if they had been successful in finding the treasure to offer her congratulations. If they had been unsuccessful, she would be heard as a voiceover explaining where they had gone wrong. From the second series onwards, this role was expanded, another studio-based person acted as adjudicator, giving the contestants tips on how they were doing against the scheduled time, providing additional information about the locations visited. In series 2, this was Annette Lynton and from series 3 onwards, TV-am weather girl Wincey Willis. In 1988, Rice left to have a baby, her place was taken by tennis player Annabel Croft. In this series, the set was revamped due to a move to Thames Television's facilities, Willis was promoted to sharing main billing with Kendall.
Croft was billed as "Guest Skyrunner" for the first episode of the series, it was stated at the time that Rice would return after giving birth, but it turned out to be the show's final series and the "Guest Skyrunner" credit was dropped. In the BBC's 2002-2003 version, newsreader Dermot Murnaghan presented, the "skyrunner" was Suzi Perry, there was no adjudicator. Advances in broadcasting technology meant that this new version could come from a much greater range of locations. Keith Thompson of Castle Air Charters was the usual helicopter pilot in both versions, though for overseas editions a local pilot was used. There was always a "chase" helicopter which relayed radio signals back to London and, although this could never be used tactically by the contestants, it was not hidden from the viewers; this communications helicopter had dark green with gold stripe livery, registration G-SPEY. The two crews would sometimes fly in formation to generate exciting footage. During 1 episode, G-SPEY was utilised to film pictures instead of Graham in G-BHXU.
Both helicopters were Bell 206 JetRangers. A feature was made of the camaraderie between the female presenter and the male recording and flight crews. Shots from the rear as the presenter ran from clue to clue in a jump-suit were satirised on Spitting Image. Cameraman Graham reaching in front of the camera to wipe away rain, sea spray, etc. with a cloth became a well-known image from the series. In 1985, the cameraman, Graham Berry, was awarded a BAFTA for his contribution to the series; the contestants would win a cash prize of £500 When first shown on Channel 4 on 28 December 1982, Treasure Hunt was one of the earliest major series on the then-new channel. The unusual format earned extra publicity for both the programme and the channel, striving to justify itself with new and different programming; the 1982–1989 series were repeated on terrestrial television several times, during the 1990s appeared on the Challenge satellite and cable channel, as well as Sky Travel. The first episod
Farnborough is an area of South East London within the London Borough of Bromley. It is located south east of Bromley, it is 13.4 miles southeast of Charing Cross. The village name derives from Fearnbiorginga. Old records date from 862 when King of Wessex, gave away 950 acres at Farnborough; the village was not included in the Domesday Book survey, but the manor existed in the Middle Ages and was held in the 13th century by Simon de Montfort. The village evolved on the main road from London to Hastings which ran via Church Road and Old Hill; the George pub was used as a coaching inn. Coaches and horses were accommodated later. Farnborough formed a civil parish in the Ruxley hundred of Kent. In 1840 the parish was included in the Metropolitan Police District, it was part of the Bromley rural sanitary district and went on to form part of the Bromley Rural District from 1894 to 1934. The parish was abolished in 1934 as part of a county review order, following the Local Government Act 1929, its area was split between the Municipal Borough of Bromley and Orpington Urban District.
The entire area has formed part of the London Borough of Bromley in Greater London since 1965. The population of the parish was as follows: On 30 March 2008, at about 14:40, a Cessna Citation 501 aircraft crashed into a house in Romsey Close, Farnborough. Five people, two pilots and three passengers, were aboard the aircraft. There were no casualties on the ground; the aircraft had taken off on the way to Pau in south-west France. The aircraft was attempting to return to Biggin Hill when it crashed, shortly after the pilot had issued a Mayday call. Amongst those killed were Eurosport commentator and former Touring Car driver David Leslie and ex-Le Mans driver Richard Lloyd. An investigation was launched by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch, which concluded that the accident had been caused by a missing rivet head, which may have contributed to the shutdown of one of the engines; the main feature of Farnborough is Farnborough Village. The Princess Royal University Hospital at Locksbottom, near Farnborough has an accident and emergency department and specialised units.
Farnborough was one of the main filming locations for Footballers' Wives. Farnborough borders Locksbottom to the north west and north, Orpington to the north east, Green Street Green to the east and south east Hazelwood to the south, Downe to the south west, Keston to the west; the nearest National Rail station to Farnborough is Orpington. 358 to Crystal Palace via Bromley & Beckenham or to Orpington. Operated by Go Ahead London for TFL R4 to Locksbottom or to St Pauls Cray via Orpington. Operated by Go Ahead London for TFL. R8 to Biggin Hill or to Orpington. Operated by Go Ahead London for TFL. Farnborough Parish WEB Site
BBC Radio 5 Live
BBC Radio 5 Live is the BBC's national radio service that broadcasts news, discussion and phone-ins. It is the principal radio station covering sport in the United Kingdom, broadcasting all major sports events staged in the UK or involving British competitors. Radio 5 Live was launched in March 1994 as a repositioning of the original Radio 5, launched on 27 August 1990, it is transmitted via analogue radio in AM on medium wave 693 and 909 kHz and digitally via digital radio and via an Internet stream. Due to rights restrictions, coverage of some events is not available online or is restricted to UK addresses; the station is a department of the BBC North division. The success of Radio 4 News FM during the first Gulf War led the BBC to propose the launch a rolling-news service; the plan was to broadcast a rolling news service on BBC Radio 4's long wave frequency but this was met with considerable opposition, both internally and externally, so the BBC decided to close BBC Radio 5 and replace the old service's educational and children's programmes with a new news service, whilst retaining the sports programmes.
BBC Radio 5 Live began its 24-hour service at 5 am on Monday 28 March 1994. The first voice on air, Jane Garvey went on to co-present the breakfast and drive-time shows with Peter Allen; the Times described the launch as "slipp smoothly and confidently into a routine of informative banter" and The Scotsman as "professionalism at its slickest". The news of the first day was dominated by the fatal stabbing at Hall Garth School in Cleveland, the first of many major incidents which the network covered live as they unfolded; the tone of the channel and more relaxed than contemporary BBC output, was the key to the channel's success and set the model for other BBC News services in the decade. The first audiences were some four million, with a quarter million. Among the key editorial staff involved in the design of programme formats and recruitment of staff for the new station were Sara Nathan editor of Channel 4 News, Tim Luckhurst editor of The Scotsman newspaper and Professor of Journalism at the University of Kent.
In 2000, the station was rebranded with a new logo which would remain with the station for another seven years. In addition, on 2 February 2002 a companion station, BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra, was launched as a digital-only service to complement the range of sport and to avoid clashes. Throughout this period, Five Live gained several awards including five Sony Awards in 2005; the station began to further its boundaries with the publication of the Radio Five Live Sporting Yearbook. In August 2007, BBC Radio 5 Live was given a new logo in line with the rest of the BBC Radio network, a new background design featuring diagonal parallel lines. In 2008, the BBC announced. In 2017/18, it was noted the station not only remained as having the fourth highest cost-per-user of all the BBC radio output, but whose costs increased – rising from 2.3p per hour the previous year to 2.5p per hour, therefore equal to 1Xtra. The audience Appreciation Index figure did not increase, remaining at 79.9. BBC Radio 5 Live broadcasts in AM on the medium wave frequencies 693 and 909 kHz nationally, with the frequency 990 kHz used in Cardigan Bay.
Uniquely to the BBC Radio network, it is the only station, neither purely digital nor broadcast in analogue FM. It is however broadcast in stereo on FM & DAB on BBC Local Radio overnight from 1 am until BBC Local Radio commences morning broadcasts from 5 am. BBC Radio 5 Live is broadcast on BBC Radio Cymru in stereo from midnight until 5:30 am, on BBC Radio Scotland from 1 am until 6 am and on BBC Radio Ulster from midnight until 6:30 am. In addition to the AM output, the station broadcasts digitally in mono on DAB Digital Radio, on television through satellite services such as Sky, cable services such as Virgin Media, DTT services such as Freeview and through IPTV; the station broadcasts programmes live through the BBC iPlayer Radio website, which allows replaying programmes up to a month after the original broadcast. The service is available on the Radioplayer internet site run by the BBC. Before the launch of digital broadcasting, BBC Radio 5 Live had broadcast on analogue satellite with near-FM quality.
For many years, the station operated from four floors within the News Centre at BBC Television Centre, because of the close connections between the station and BBC News, the co-location of BBC Sport. However, as part of the corporation's plan to sell off Television Centre, the decision was made in 2008 to move BBC Radio 5 Live to the new broadcast hub at MediaCityUK; the move itself took two months. The new studios occupy a single floor in Quay House, with two studios large enough for several guests and a separate studio for large groups. Up All Night with Dotun Adebayo, Rhod Sharp & a guest host Morning Reports with the overnight newsrea
Wimbledon is a district and town of south-west London, England, 7.1 miles south-west of the centre of London at Charing Cross, in the London Borough of Merton, south of Wandsworth, north-east of New Malden, north-west of Mitcham, west of Streatham and north of Sutton. Wimbledon had a population of 68,187 in 2011 which includes the electoral wards of Abbey, Hillside, Village, Raynes Park and Wimbledon Park, it is home to the Wimbledon Tennis Championships and New Wimbledon Theatre, contains Wimbledon Common, one of the largest areas of common land in London along with a Wimbledon Tennis Club. The residential and retail area is split into two sections known as the "village" and the "town", with the High Street being the rebuilding of the original medieval village, the "town" having first developed after the building of the railway station in 1838. Wimbledon has been inhabited since at least the Iron Age when the hill fort on Wimbledon Common is thought to have been constructed. In 1087 when the Domesday Book was compiled, Wimbledon was part of the manor of Mortlake.
The ownership of the manor of Wimbledon changed between various wealthy families many times during its history, the area attracted other wealthy families who built large houses such as Eagle House, Wimbledon Manor House and Warren House. The village developed with a stable rural population coexisting with nobility and wealthy merchants from the city. In the 18th century the Dog and Fox public house became a stop on the stagecoach run from London to Portsmouth in 1838 the London and South Western Railway opened a station to the south-east of the village at the bottom of Wimbledon Hill; the location of the station shifted the focus of the town's subsequent growth away from the original village centre. Wimbledon had its own borough larger than its historic boundaries while still in the county of Surrey. Since 2005, the north and west of the borough have been represented in Westminster by Stephen Hammond, a Conservative MP; the east and south of the Borough are represented by Siobhain McDonagh, a Labour MP.
Wimbledon has established minority groups. Wimbledon, a small farming locality in New Zealand, was named after this district in the 1880s after a local resident shot a bullock from a considerable distance away; the shot was considered by onlookers to be worthy of the rifle-shooting championships held in Wimbledon at the time. Wimbledon has been inhabited since at least the Iron Age when the hill fort on Wimbledon Common, the second-largest in London, is thought to have been constructed; the original nucleus of Wimbledon was at the top of the hill close to the common – the area now known locally as "the village". The village is referred to as "Wimbedounyng" in a charter signed by King Edgar the Peaceful in 967; the name Wimbledon means "Wynnman's hill", with the final element of the name being the Celtic "dun". The name is shown on J. Cary's 1786 map of the London area as "Wimbleton", the current spelling appears to have been settled on recently in the early 19th century, the last in a long line of variations.
At the time the Domesday Book was compiled, Wimbledon was part of the manor of Mortlake, so was not recorded. The ownership of the manor of Wimbledon changed hands many times during its history; the manor was held by the church until 1398 when Thomas Arundel, Archbishop of Canterbury fell out of favour with Richard II and was exiled. The manor became crown property; the manor remained crown property until the reign of Henry VIII when it was granted to Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex, until Cromwell was executed in 1540 and the land was again confiscated. The manor was next held by Henry VIII's last wife and widow Catherine Parr until her death in 1548 when it again reverted to the monarch. In the 1550s, Henry's daughter, Mary I, granted the manor to Cardinal Reginald Pole who held it until his death in 1558 when it once again become royal property. Mary's sister, Elizabeth I held the property until 1574, when she gave the manor house to Christopher Hatton, who sold it in the same year to Sir Thomas Cecil, Earl of Exeter.
The lands of the manor were given to the Cecil family in 1588 and a new manor house, Wimbledon Palace, was constructed and gardens laid out in the formal Elizabethan style. Wimbledon's proximity to the capital was beginning to attract other wealthy families. In 1613 Robert Bell, Master of the Worshipful Company of Girdlers and a director of the British East India Company built Eagle House as a home at an easy distance from London; the Cecil family retained the manor for fifty years, before it was bought by Charles I in 1638 for his Queen, Henrietta Maria. Following the King's execution in 1649, the manor passed among various parliamentarian owners, including the Leeds MP Adam Baynes and the civil war general John Lambert, but after the restoration of the monarchy in 1660, it was returned to Henrietta Maria; the Dowager Queen sold the manor in 1661 to George Digby, Earl of Bristol, who employed John Evelyn to improve and update the landscape in accordance with the latest fashions, including grottos and fountains.
On his death in 1677, the manor was sold again to the Lord High Treasurer, Thomas Osborne, Earl of Danby. The Osborne family sold the manor to Sir Theodore Janssen in 1712. Janssen, a director of the South Sea Company, began a new house to replace the one built by the Cecils, but the spectacular collapse of the company meant it was never finished; the next owner was Sarah Church
The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K