England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west, the Irish Sea lies northwest of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east, the country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain in its centre and south, and includes over 100 smaller islands such as the Isles of Scilly, and the Isle of Wight. England became a state in the 10th century, and since the Age of Discovery. The Industrial Revolution began in 18th-century England, transforming its society into the worlds first industrialised nation, Englands terrain mostly comprises low hills and plains, especially in central and southern England. However, there are uplands in the north and in the southwest, the capital is London, which is the largest metropolitan area in both the United Kingdom and the European Union. In 1801, Great Britain was united with the Kingdom of Ireland through another Act of Union to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
In 1922 the Irish Free State seceded from the United Kingdom, leading to the latter being renamed the United Kingdom of Great Britain, the name England is derived from the Old English name Englaland, which means land of the Angles. The Angles were one of the Germanic tribes that settled in Great Britain during the Early Middle Ages, the Angles came from the Angeln peninsula in the Bay of Kiel area of the Baltic Sea. The earliest recorded use of the term, as Engla londe, is in the ninth century translation into Old English of Bedes Ecclesiastical History of the English People. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, its spelling was first used in 1538. The earliest attested reference to the Angles occurs in the 1st-century work by Tacitus, 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. An alternative name for England is Albion, the name Albion originally referred to the entire island of Great Britain.
The nominally earliest record of the name appears in the Aristotelian Corpus, specifically the 4th century BC De Mundo, in it are two very large islands called Britannia, these are Albion and Ierne. But modern scholarly consensus ascribes De Mundo not to Aristotle but to Pseudo-Aristotle, the word Albion or insula Albionum has two possible origins. Albion is now applied to England in a poetic capacity. Another romantic name for England is Loegria, related to the Welsh word for England, 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
West Midlands (region)
The West Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the first level of NUTS for statistical purposes. It covers the western half of the area known as the Midlands. The city of Coventry is located within the West Midlands county, the region is geographically diverse, from the urban central areas of the conurbation to the rural western counties of Shropshire and Herefordshire which border Wales. The region encompasses five Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Wye Valley, Shropshire hills, Cannock Chase, Malvern Hills, Warwickshire is home to the town of Stratford upon Avon, the birthplace of the writer William Shakespeare. The highest point in the region is Black Mountain, at 703 metres in west Herefordshire on the border with Powys, Wales. The region contains five Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, including all of the Shropshire Hills, Malvern Hills and Cannock Chase, the Peak District national park stretches into the northern corner of Staffordshire. Served by many lines in the areas such as the West Coast Main Line.
The Welsh Marches Line and the Cotswold Line transect the region as well as the Cross Country Route, there are plans to reopen the Honeybourne Line. Numerous notable roads pass through the region, with most converging around the central conurbation, the M6 toll provides an alternative route to the M6 between Coleshill and Cannock, passing north of Sutton Coldfield and just south of Lichfield. The M40 connects the region through South East England to London, with its terminus at its junction with the M42, it passes close to Warwick. The M42 connects the M5 at Bromsgrove, passing around the south and east of Birmingham, joining the M40 and M6, passing Solihull and Castle Bromwich, to Tamworth, the M50 connects the M5 from near Tewkesbury to Ross-on-Wye in the southwest. The M54 connects Wellington in the west, passing Telford, to the M6 near Cannock, the A5 road traverses the region northwest-southeast, passing through Shrewsbury, Cannock and Nuneaton. As part of the planning system, the Regional Assembly is under statutory requirement to produce a Regional Transport Strategy to provide long term planning for transport in the region.
This involves region wide transport schemes such as those carried out by the Highways Agency, within the region, the local transport authorities carry out transport planning through the use of a Local Transport Plan which outlines their strategies and implementation programme. The most recent LTP is that for the period 2006-11, in the West Midlands region, the following transport authorities have published their LTP online, Shropshire U. A. The transport authority of Stoke-on-Trent U. A, Major towns and cities in the West Midlands region include, Bold indicates city status. The region is based on the former region of Mercia. The Battle of Edgehill in October 1642 started the English Civil War, jane Bunford of Bartley Green until 1982 was the tallest woman ever in the world, and now the second tallest, and the tallest person ever in the UK, at 7 ft 11in
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom or Britain, is a sovereign country in western Europe. Lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland, the United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state—the Republic of Ireland. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland, with an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world and the 11th-largest in Europe. It is the 21st-most populous country, with an estimated 65.1 million inhabitants, this makes it the fourth-most densely populated country in the European Union. The United Kingdom is a monarchy with a parliamentary system of governance. The monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 6 February 1952, other major urban areas in the United Kingdom include the regions of Birmingham, Glasgow and Manchester.
The United Kingdom consists of four countries—England, Wales, the last three have devolved administrations, each with varying powers, based in their capitals, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. The relationships among the countries of the UK have changed over time, Wales was annexed by the Kingdom of England under the Laws in Wales Acts 1535 and 1542. A treaty between England and Scotland resulted in 1707 in a unified Kingdom of Great Britain, which merged in 1801 with the Kingdom of Ireland to form 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, there are fourteen British Overseas Territories. These are the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, British influence can be observed in the language and legal systems of many of its former colonies. The United Kingdom is a country and has the worlds fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP. The UK is considered to have an economy and is categorised as very high in the Human Development Index.
It was the worlds first industrialised country and the worlds foremost power during the 19th, the UK remains a great power with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally. It is a nuclear weapons state and its military expenditure ranks fourth or fifth in the world. The UK has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946 and it has been a leading member state of the EU and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. However, on 23 June 2016, a referendum on the UKs membership of the EU resulted in a decision to leave. The Acts of Union 1800 united the Kingdom of Great Britain, Scotland and Northern Ireland have devolved self-government
Staffordshire is a landlocked county in the West Midlands of England. It adjoins Cheshire to the north west and Leicestershire to the east, Warwickshire to the south east, West Midlands and Worcestershire to the south, and Shropshire to the west. The largest city in Staffordshire is Stoke-on-Trent, which is administered separately from the rest of the county as an independent unitary authority, Lichfield has city status, although this is a considerably smaller cathedral city. Major towns include Stafford, Burton upon Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme, smaller towns include Stone and Rugeley, and large villages Eccleshall, Kinver, Penkridge and Stretton. Cannock Chase AONB is within the county as well as parts of the National Forest, Walsall, West Bromwich, and Smethwick were historic Staffordshire towns until local government reorganisation created the West Midlands county in 1974. Historically, Staffordshire was divided into the five hundreds of Cuttlestone, Pirehill, the historic boundaries of Staffordshire cover much of what is now the metropolitan county of West Midlands.
The Act saw the towns of Tamworth and Burton upon Trent united entirely in Staffordshire, in 1553 Queen Mary made Lichfield a county separate from the rest of Staffordshire. Handsworth and Perry Barr became part of the county borough of Birmingham in the early 20th century, Burton, in the east of the county, became a county borough in 1901, and was followed by Smethwick, another town in the Black Country in 1907. In 1910 the six towns of the Staffordshire Potteries, including Hanley, a major reorganisation in the Black Country in 1966, under the recommendation of the Local Government Commission for England led to the creation of an area of contiguous county boroughs. Meanwhile, the county borough of Dudley, historically a part of Worcestershire, expanded. County boroughs were abolished, with Stoke becoming a district in Staffordshire. On 1 April 1997, under a recommendation of the Banham Commission, in July 2009 the largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold ever found in Britain was discovered in a field near Lichfield.
The artefacts, known as The Staffordshire Hoard have tentatively dated to the 7th or 8th centuries. Some nationally and internationally known companies have their base in Staffordshire. They include the Britannia Building Society which is based in Leek, JCB is based in Rocester near Uttoxeter and bet365 based in Stoke-on-Trent. The theme park Alton Towers is in the Staffordshire Moorlands and several of the worlds largest pottery manufacturers are based in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire has a completely comprehensive system with eight independent schools. Most secondary schools are from 11–16 or 18, but two in Staffordshire Moorlands and South Staffordshire are from 13–18, there are two universities in the county, Keele University in Newcastle-under-Lyme and Staffordshire University, which has campuses in Stoke-on-Trent, Stafford and Shrewsbury. The modern county of Staffordshire currently has three football clubs – Stoke City and Port Vale, both from Stoke-on-Trent, and Burton Albion, who play in Burton upon Trent.
They were among the 12 founder members of the Football League in 1888, in 1972, the club finally won a major trophy when they lifted the Football League Cup, but after relegation from the First Division in 1985 they would not experience top flight football for 23 years
Black Country Living Museum
The Black Country Living Museum is an open-air museum of rebuilt historic buildings in Dudley in the West Midlands of England. It is located in the centre of the Black Country conurbation,10 miles west of Birmingham, the museum occupies 105,000 square metres of former industrial land partly reclaimed from a former railway goods yard, disused lime kilns and former coal pits. Most buildings were relocated from their sites to form a base from where demonstrators portray life spanning 300 years of history. The museum is constantly changing as new exhibits, especially buildings, are being added, the museum is close to the site where Thomas Dudley first mastered the technique of smelting iron with coal instead of wood charcoal and making iron enough for industrial use. Having a claim to be the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, the sites coal mining heritage is shown by an underground drift and colliery surface buildings. The museum has a replica of a Newcomen atmospheric engine. Thomas Newcomens invention was first successfully put to use in Tipton in 1712, the museums reconstruction was based on a print engraved by Thomas Barney, filemaker of Wolverhampton, in 1719.
Electric trams and trolleybuses transport visitors from the entrance to the village where thirty domestic, the museum is one of three in the UK with working trolleybuses. The route to the passes the Cast Iron Houses and a 1930s fairground. A narrowboat operated by Dudley Canal Trust makes trips on the Dudley Canal, on 16 February 2012, the museums collection was awarded designated status by Arts Council England, a mark of distinction celebrating its unique national and international importance. The museum is run by the Black Country Living Museum Trust, the exhibition includes more fragile items such as glassware, reflecting the centuries-old industry that produced lead crystal glass and the Joseph Chance glass works between Oldbury and Smethwick. The museum site contained 42 disused mine shafts, most of which had filled in. Two are preserved, one at the Racecourse Colliery and Brook Shaft, in 1712, Thomas Newcomen built the worlds first successful steam engine which was used for pumping water from coal mines on Lord Dudleys estates.
In 1986, after ten years of research, the completed the construction of a full-scale working replica of the engine. The fire engine is housed in a building from which a wooden beam projects through one wall. Rods hang from the end of the beam and operate pumps at the bottom of the mine shaft which raise the water to the surface. The engine has a boiler, a cylinder and piston and operating valves, a coal fire heats water in the boiler which is little more than a covered pan and the steam generated passes through a valve into the brass cylinder above it. The cylinder is more than two metres long and 52 centimetres in diameter, the steam in the cylinder is condensed by injecting cold water and the vacuum beneath the piston pulls the inner end of the beam down causing the pump to move
The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in the period from about 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840. The Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain and most of the important technological innovations were British, aided by these legal and cultural foundations, an entrepreneurial spirit and consumer revolution drove industrialisation in Britain, which would be emulated in countries around the world. A change in marrying patterns to getting married made able to accumulate more human capital during their youth. The Industrial Revolution marks a turning point in history, almost every aspect of daily life was influenced in some way. In particular, average income and population began to exhibit unprecedented sustained growth, mechanised textile production spread from Great Britain to continental Europe in the early 19th century, with important centres of textiles and coal emerging in Belgium, and in France. Since industrialisation has spread throughout much of the world, the precise start and end of the Industrial Revolution is still debated among historians, as is the pace of economic and social changes.
Economic historians are in agreement that the onset of the Industrial Revolution is the most important event in the history of humanity since the domestication of animals and plants. The term Industrial Revolution applied to change was becoming more common by the late 1830s. Friedrich Engels in The Condition of the Working Class in England in 1844 spoke of an industrial revolution, although Engels wrote in the 1840s, his book was not translated into English until the late 1800s, and his expression did not enter everyday language until then. Credit for popularising the term may be given to Arnold Toynbee, some historians, such as John Clapham and Nicholas Crafts, have argued that the economic and social changes occurred gradually and the term revolution is a misnomer. This is still a subject of debate among some historians, the commencement of the Industrial Revolution is closely linked to a small number of innovations, beginning in the second half of the 18th century. By the 1830s the following gains had been made in important technologies, Textiles – mechanised cotton spinning powered by steam or water greatly increased the output of a worker, the power loom increased the output of a worker by a factor of over 40.
The cotton gin increased productivity of removing seed from cotton by a factor of 50, large gains in productivity occurred in spinning and weaving of wool and linen, but they were not as great as in cotton. Steam power – the efficiency of steam engines increased so that they used between one-fifth and one-tenth as much fuel, the adaptation of stationary steam engines to rotary motion made them suitable for industrial uses. The high pressure engine had a power to weight ratio. Steam power underwent an expansion after 1800. Iron making – the substitution of coke for charcoal greatly lowered the fuel cost for pig iron, using coke allowed larger blast furnaces, resulting in economies of scale. The cast iron blowing cylinder was first used in 1760 and it was improved by making it double acting, which allowed higher furnace temperatures
Steel is an alloy of iron and other elements, primarily carbon, that is widely used in construction and other applications because of its high tensile strength and low cost. Steels base metal is iron, which is able to take on two forms, body centered cubic and face centered cubic, depending on its temperature. It is the interaction of those allotropes with the elements, primarily carbon. In the body-centred cubic arrangement, there is an atom in the centre of each cube. Carbon, other elements, and inclusions within iron act as hardening agents that prevent the movement of dislocations that otherwise occur in the lattices of iron atoms. The carbon in steel alloys may contribute up to 2. 1% of its weight. Steels strength compared to pure iron is possible at the expense of irons ductility. With the invention of the Bessemer process in the mid-19th century and this was followed by Siemens-Martin process and Gilchrist-Thomas process that refined the quality of steel. With their introductions, mild steel replaced wrought iron, further refinements in the process, such as basic oxygen steelmaking, largely replaced earlier methods by further lowering the cost of production and increasing the quality of the product.
Today, steel is one of the most common materials in the world and it is a major component in buildings, tools, automobiles, machines and weapons. Modern steel is generally identified by various grades defined by assorted standards organizations, the noun steel originates from the Proto-Germanic adjective stakhlijan, which is related to stakhla. The carbon content of steel is between 0. 002% and 2. 1% by weight for plain iron–carbon alloys and these values vary depending on alloying elements such as manganese, nickel, tungsten, carbon and so on. Basically, steel is an alloy that does not undergo eutectic reaction. In contrast, cast iron does undergo eutectic reaction, too little carbon content leaves iron quite soft and weak. Carbon contents higher than those of steel make an alloy, commonly called pig iron, while iron alloyed with carbon is called carbon steel, alloy steel is steel to which other alloying elements have been intentionally added to modify the characteristics of steel. Common alloying elements include, nickel, molybdenum, titanium, tungsten and niobium.
Additional elements are important in steel, sulfur and traces of oxygen and copper. Alloys with a higher than 2. 1% carbon content, depending on other element content, cast iron is not malleable even when hot, but it can be formed by casting as it has a lower melting point than steel and good castability properties
Quarry Bank is a village in the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, West Midlands, which exists within the Brierley Hill DY5 postal district. The earliest settlements in Quarry Bank were smallholdings, where an industrial worker such as a nailer lived, early industrial development took place the early 17th century around the Cradley Forge. Quarry Bank acquired its own status in September 1844. It had an urban sanitory authority and so became an district of Staffordshire from 1894. However, in 1934, it amalgamated with the Brierley Hill urban district and this became part of the county borough of Dudley in 1966 and the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley in West Midlands since 1974. Quarry Bank has become affected by the adjacent Merry Hill Shopping Centre which has bought high volumes of traffic along the High Street. Clinging to the hillside and varying from steep to almost flat, it has changed little. Major retail chains have bypassed the town, leaving just small independent traders, in 2008, Quarry Bank library was closed, despite protests by local residents and local councillors.
The library building was sold off by Dudley Council, and has become a gym. The money raised from the sale was used to fund improvements to libraries in other parts of the Borough, in 2011, Saltwells House, a historic house which Dudley Council had allowed to fall into decay was demolished. Future plans for the site are not known, though it is suspected the site will be sold off to private developers. A local landmark is Mount Pleasant Primary School, which was opened in the west of the old village on 10 September 1888, the schools first head teacher was Mr W. E. Hunt, who remained at the helm until 1930, the schools current head teacher, Mrs J Hartill, is the eighth to have held the position in more than 120 years. The school covers the 3-11 age range, including a unit which opened in the early 1990s around the time that the existing school buildings were expanded. It had 12-year-olds on its roll from 1972 to 1990, the other local primary school is Quarry Bank Primary School, in the High Street, which opened in 1935 and was rebuilt in 2011.
The first building at the site actually opened about five years earlier as an annexe to the Coppice Lane site, three more buildings were added at the site between 1980 and 1991, by which time the school had 1,200 pupils on its roll. It has a Scout Group which was registered in 1922 - 1st Quarry Bank Scout Group and it Caters for children from all of the local primary schools and has been a cornerstone of the community with most families in the area having some ties to it. Its current Headquarters is based at, 1st Quarry Bank Scout Hut, Bobs Coppice Walk, Brierley Hill, in its 90+ year history it has been based at several locations and has close ties with the Local Community Association, Royal British Legion
Old English or Anglo-Saxon is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages. It was brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers probably in the mid 5th century, Old English developed from a set of Anglo-Frisian or North Sea Germanic dialects originally spoken by Germanic tribes traditionally known as the Angles and Jutes. As the Anglo-Saxons became dominant in England, their language replaced the languages of Roman Britain, Common Brittonic, a Celtic language, Old English had four main dialects, associated with particular Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, Northumbrian and West Saxon. It was West Saxon that formed the basis for the standard of the Old English period, although the dominant forms of Middle. The speech of eastern and northern parts of England was subject to strong Old Norse influence due to Scandinavian rule, Old English is one of the West Germanic languages, and its closest relatives are Old Frisian and Old Saxon.
Like other old Germanic languages, it is different from Modern English. Old English grammar is similar to that of modern German, adjectives and verbs have many inflectional endings and forms. The oldest Old English inscriptions were using a runic system. Old English was not static, and its usage covered a period of 700 years, from the Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain in the 5th century to the late 11th century, some time after the Norman invasion. While indicating that the establishment of dates is a process, Albert Baugh dates Old English from 450 to 1150, a period of full inflections. Perhaps around 85 per cent of Old English words are no longer in use, Old English is a West Germanic language, developing out of Ingvaeonic dialects from the 5th century. It came to be spoken over most of the territory of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms which became the Kingdom of England and this included most of present-day England, as well as part of what is now southeastern Scotland, which for several centuries belonged to the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Northumbria.
Other parts of the island – Wales and most of Scotland – continued to use Celtic languages, Norse was widely spoken in the parts of England which fell under Danish law. Anglo-Saxon literacy developed after Christianisation in the late 7th century, the oldest surviving text of Old English literature is Cædmons Hymn, composed between 658 and 680. There is a corpus of runic inscriptions from the 5th to 7th centuries. The Old English Latin alphabet was introduced around the 9th century, with the unification of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms by Alfred the Great in the 9th century, the language of government and literature became standardised around the West Saxon dialect. In Old English, typical of the development of literature, poetry arose before prose, a literary standard, dating from the 10th century, arose under the influence of Bishop Æthelwold of Winchester, and was followed by such writers as the prolific Ælfric of Eynsham. This form of the language is known as the Winchester standard and it is considered to represent the classical form of Old English