British Bangladeshis are people of Bangladeshi origin who have attained citizenship in the United Kingdom, through immigration and historical naturalisation. During the 1970s, large numbers of Bangladeshis immigrated to the UK from the Sylhet Division; the largest concentration live in east London boroughs, such as Tower Hamlets. This large diaspora in London leads people in Bangladesh to refer to British Bangladeshis as "Londonis". Bangladeshis form one of the UK's largest group of people of overseas descent and are one of the country's youngest and fastest growing communities; the 2011 UK Census recorded nearly half-a-million residents of Bangladeshi ethnicity. British Bangladeshis have the highest overall relative poverty rate of any ethnic group in the UK with 65% of Bangladeshis living in low income households. Bengalis had been present in Britain as early as the 19th century; the earliest records of arrivals from the region, now known as Bangladesh are of Sylheti cooks in London during 1873, in the employment of the East India Company, who travelled to the UK as lascars on ships to work in restaurants.
Some ancestors of British Bangladeshis went to the UK before World War I. Author Caroline Adams records that in 1925 a lost Bengali man was searching for other Bengali settlers in London; these first few arrivals started the process of "chain migration" from one region of Bangladesh, which led to substantial numbers of people migrating from rural areas of the region, creating links between relatives in Britain and the region. They immigrated to the United Kingdom to find work, achieve a better standard of living, to escape conflict. During the pre-state years, the 1950s and 1960s, Bengali men immigrated to London in search of employment. Most settled in Tower Hamlets around Spitalfields and Brick Lane. In 1971, Bangladesh fought for its independence from Pakistan in what was known as the Bangladesh Liberation War. In the region of Sylhet, this led some people to join Liberation Army. In the 1970s, changes in immigration laws encouraged a new wave of Bangladeshis to come to the UK and settle. Job opportunities were limited to low paid sectors, with unskilled and semi-skilled work in small factories and the textile trade being common.
When the "Indian' restaurant" concept became popular, some Sylhetis started to open cafes. From these small beginnings a network of Bangladeshi restaurants and other small businesses became established in Brick Lane and surrounding areas; the influence of Bangladeshi culture and diversity began to develop across the East London boroughs. The early immigrants lived and worked in cramped basements and attics within the Tower Hamlets area; the men were illiterate, poorly educated, spoke little English, so they could not interact well with the English-speaking population and could not enter higher education. Some became targets for businessmen, who sold their properties to Sylhetis though they had no legal claim to the buildings. By the late 1970s, the Brick Lane area had become predominantly Bengali, replacing the former Jewish community which had declined. Jews migrated to outlying suburbs of London, as they integrated with the majority British population. Jewish bakeries were turned into curry houses, jewellery shops became sari stores, synagogues became dress factories.
The synagogue at the corner of Fournier Street and Brick Lane became the Jamme Masjid or'Great London Mosque', which continues to serve the Bangladeshi community to this day. This building represents the history of successive communities of immigrants in this part of London, it was built in 1743 as a French Protestant church. It was sold, to become the Jamme Masjid; the period however saw a rise in the number of attacks on Bangladeshis in the area, in a reprise of the racial tensions of the 1930s, when Oswald Mosley's Blackshirts had marched against the Jewish communities. In nearby Bethnal Green the anti-immigrant National Front became active, distributing leaflets on the streets and holding meetings. White youths known as "skinheads" appeared in the Brick Lane area, vandalising property and spitting on Bengali children and assaulting women. Bengali children were allowed out of school early. Parents began to impose curfews on their children, for their own safety. On 4 May 1978, Altab Ali, a 25-year-old Bangladeshi clothing worker, was murdered by three teenage boys as he walked home from work in a racially motivated attack.
The murder took place by St Mary's Churchyard. This murder mobilised the Bangladeshi community in Britain. Demonstrations were held in the area of Brick Lane against the National Front, groups such as the Bangladesh Youth Movement were formed. On 14 May, over 7,000 people Bangladeshis, took part in a demonstration against racial violence, marching behind Altab Ali's coffin to Hyde Park; some youths carried out reprisal attacks on their skinhead opponents. The name Altab Ali became associated with a movement of resistance against racist attacks, remains linked with this struggle for human rights, his murder was the trigger for the first significant political organisation against racism by local Bangladeshis. The identification and association of British Bangladeshis with Tower Hamlets owes much to this campaign. A park has been na
Jonathan "Jon" Cruddas is a Labour Party politician who has served as a Member of Parliament since 2001, first for Dagenham and for the successor constituency of Dagenham and Rainham. A graduate of the University of Warwick, Cruddas was first elected to Parliament at the 2001 general election. Having been critical of many aspects of the Blair Government, Cruddas stood for the Deputy Leadership of the Labour Party in 2007, being eliminated in the penultimate round of the contest. Unlike the other five candidates, he stated that he did not wish to become Deputy Prime Minister, he won the most votes in the first round of voting, obtaining 19.39% of the vote from both party members and party-affiliated organisations, it is thought that the second-choice votes of the Cruddas supporters contributed to Harriet Harman's eventual victory. After his campaign, he was offered a position in the Cabinet by Prime Minister Gordon Brown, which he turned down. Despite being touted by some media sources as a potential candidate for the Leadership of the Labour Party in the future, he ruled himself out of the 2010 leadership election, saying that he did not want the job.
In 2012, Cruddas was appointed to Ed Miliband's Shadow Cabinet, replacing Liam Byrne as Labour Party Policy Coordinator. Cruddas was born in Helston to John, a sailor, Pat. Cruddas was educated at the Oaklands Roman Catholic Comprehensive School, Portsmouth, before attending the University of Warwick where he received an M. A. and a Ph. D. in Industrial and Business Studies in 1991, writing a thesis entitled An analysis of value theory, the sphere of production and contemporary approaches to the reorganisation of workplace relations. He was a Visiting Fellow of the University of Wisconsin–Madison from 1987–89. Cruddas is a Visiting Fellow at Nuffield College, is a Visiting Professor at the University of Leicester involved with the Centre for Sustainable Work and Employment Futures. In 1989, he became a policy officer for the Labour Party before being appointed Senior Assistant to Labour Party General Secretary Larry Whitty in 1994, remaining in that position when Tom Sawyer became General Secretary that same year.
After the 1997 general election, he was employed as Deputy Political Secretary to newly elected Prime Minister Tony Blair. His main role was to be a liaison between the Prime Minister and the trade unions, with whom Blair had had a difficult relationship. In this role, he worked on the introduction of the minimum wage. Cruddas was selected to be the Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the safe Labour seat of Dagenham in 2000, after the sitting MP Judith Church announced that she would be retiring, he was elected as the MP for Dagenham the following year at the 2001 general election, with a majority of 8,693 votes. From the backbenches, Cruddas became a vocal critic of the government for what he saw as their ignoring of their traditional, working-class support in a bid to be more appealing to middle-class voters, he rebelled against the government on a number of occasions. He supported both the Fourth Option for direct investment in council housing and the Trade Union Freedom Bill. Cruddas was re-elected at the 2005 general election, but his Dagenham constituency was abolished in boundary changes for the 2010 general election.
Cruddas chose to contest the newly created constituency of Dagenham and Rainham, notionally marginal. He won the seat by 2,630 votes in a close-run election campaign, a seat that the British National Party had targeted; this resulted in a large number of anti-fascist organisations not affiliated to the Labour Party, such as Hope not Hate, campaigning for Cruddas to resist the BNP. After being elected, he took up a part-time position teaching Labour history at University College, Oxford from 2010–12. On 27 September 2006, Cruddas announced his intention to stand to become Deputy Leader of the Labour Party once the incumbent, John Prescott, stood down, he said he did not want to be Deputy Prime Minister, but instead wished to act as a "transmission belt" with the grassroots of the party. In interviews, Cruddas said that he did not want the "trappings or baubles" that would come with the job of Deputy Prime Minister, such as use of the Dorneywood weekend country residence. Cruddas accrued nominations from 49 MPs and received strong union backing, including Amicus and the Transport and General Workers' Union.
He received backing from former Deputy Leader Roy Hattersley Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, NUS President Gemma Tumelty, former National Executive Committee member and presenter Tony Robinson. The left-wing magazine Tribune endorsed him as "the change, required". On 24 June 2007, it was announced that Harriet Harman had won the election, although Cruddas gained the highest proportion of votes in the first round, he was eliminated in the fourth round of voting, coming third behind Harman and Alan Johnson. He had secured the highest number of votes from members of affiliated organisation in every round before his elimination. On 15 May 2012, Labour Leader Ed Miliband offered Cruddas a position in his Shadow Cabinet as Labour's Policy Coordinator, with a view to crafting Labour's manifesto for the 2015 general election. Cruddas accepted the offer; the Future of Work Commission was announced at the 2016 Labour Party Annual Con
Classification of ethnicity in the United Kingdom
A number of different systems of classification of ethnicity in the United Kingdom exist. These schemata have been the subject of debate, including about the nature of ethnicity, how or whether it can be categorised, the relationship between ethnicity and nationality; the 1991 UK census was the first to include a question on ethnicity. Field trials had started in 1975 to establish whether a question could be devised, acceptable to the public and would provide information on race or ethnicity that would be more reliable than questions about an individual's parents' birthplaces. A number of different questions and answer classifications were suggested and tested, culminating in the April 1989 census test; the question used in the 1991 census was similar to that tested in 1989, took the same format on the census forms in England and Scotland. However, the question was not asked in Northern Ireland; the tick-boxes used in 1991 were "White", "Black-Caribbean", "Black-African", "Black-Other", "Indian", "Pakistani", "Bangladeshi", "Chinese" and "Any other ethnic group".
Sociologist Peter J. Aspinall has categorised what he regards as a number of "persistent problems with salient collective terminology"; these problems are ambiguity in respect of the populations that are described by different labels, the invisibility of white minority groups in official classifications, the acceptability of the terms used to those that they describe, whether the collectivities have any substantive meaning. A number of academics have pointed out that the ethnicity classification employed in the census and other official statistics in the UK since 1991 involve confusion between the concepts of ethnicity and race. David I. Kertzer and Dominique Arel argue that this is the case in many censuses, that "the case of Britain is illuminative of the recurring failure to distinguish race from ethnicity". Aspinall notes that sustained academic attention has been focused on "how the censuses measure ethnicity the use of dimensions that many claim have little to do with ethnicity, such as skin colour and nationality".
In 2007, Simpson and Bola Akinwale studied the stability of individuals' responses to ethnic group questions between the 1991 and 2001 census. They concluded that the membership of the "White" category was stable, whereas 7–9 per cent of those in the "Asian" group and 23 per cent of both the "Caribbean" and the "African" group in 1991 had switched to another group by 2001, they suggested that conscious changes in affiliation explained little of this instability, whereas unreliability of the question was significant due to the ambiguous nature of the categories used and due to imprecision in the imputation of missing values. It has been argued that the wording of the ethnicity question in the 2001 census, "What is your ethnic group?", embodies "an essential being ethnic" as opposed to "a constructed belonging to an ethnicity". The latter would be reflected in a question such as "choose one box to best describe your ethnic group", subsequently added in the 2011 census. Sociologist Steven Vertovec argues that "much public discourse and service provision is still based on a limited set of Census categories", that "these categories do not begin to convey the extent and modes of diversity existing within the population today".
User consultation undertaken by the Office for National Statistics for the purpose of planning the 2011 census in England and Wales found that most of the respondents from all ethnic groups that took part in the testing felt comfortable with the use of the terms "Black" and "White". However, some participants suggested that these colour terms were confusing and unacceptable, did not adequately describe an individual's ethnic group, did not reflect his or her true skin colour, were stereotypical and outdated terms; the heading "Black or Black British", used in 2001, was changed to "Black/African/Caribbean/Black British" for the 2011 census. As with earlier censuses, individuals who did not identify as "Black", "White" or "Asian" could instead write in their own ethnic group under "Other ethnic group". Persons with multiple ancestries could indicate their respective ethnic backgrounds under a "Mixed or multiple ethnic groups" tick box and write-in area. Between 2004 and 2008, the General Register Office for Scotland conducted official consultation and question testing for the purpose of planning the 2011 Scottish census, with key evidence informing the new classification drawn from similar workshops carried out by the Office for National Statistics, the Welsh Assembly Government, the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency.
The GOS interviewees. Some participants opposed the use of such terms. Opposition to the term "Black" was strongest among individuals originating from ethnic groups in Africa and the Caribbean the former; the main reasons cited for this opposition were that racial terms like "Black" and "White" were invalid constructed concepts not based on empirical reality. To redress this, the GOS established new, separate "African, African Scottish or African British" and "Caribbean, Caribbean Scottish or Caribbean British" tick boxes for individuals from Africa and the Caribbean who did not identify as "Black, Black S
Labour Party (UK)
The Labour Party is a centre-left political party in the United Kingdom, described as an alliance of social democrats, democratic socialists and trade unionists. The party's platform emphasises greater state intervention, social justice and strengthening workers' rights; the Labour Party was founded in 1900, having grown out of the trade union movement and socialist parties of the nineteenth century. It overtook the Liberal Party to become the main opposition to the Conservative Party in the early 1920s, forming two minority governments under Ramsay MacDonald in the 1920s and early 1930s. Labour served in the wartime coalition of 1940-1945, after which Clement Attlee's Labour government established the National Health Service and expanded the welfare state from 1945 to 1951. Under Harold Wilson and James Callaghan, Labour again governed from 1964 to 1970 and 1974 to 1979. In the 1990s Tony Blair took Labour closer to the centre as part of his "New Labour" project, which governed the UK under Blair and Gordon Brown from 1997 to 2010.
After Corbyn took over in 2015, the party has moved leftward. Labour is the Official Opposition in the Parliament of the United Kingdom, having won the second-largest number of seats in the 2017 general election; the Labour Party is the largest party in the Welsh Assembly, forming the main party in the current Welsh government. The party is the third largest in the Scottish Parliament. Labour is a member of the Party of European Socialists and Progressive Alliance, holds observer status in the Socialist International, sits with the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament; the party includes semi-autonomous Scottish and Welsh branches and supports the Social Democratic and Labour Party in Northern Ireland. As of 2017, Labour had the largest membership of any party in Western Europe; the Labour Party originated in the late 19th century, meeting the demand for a new political party to represent the interests and needs of the urban working class, a demographic which had increased in number, many of whom only gained suffrage with the passage of the Representation of the People Act 1884.
Some members of the trades union movement became interested in moving into the political field, after further extensions of the voting franchise in 1867 and 1885, the Liberal Party endorsed some trade-union sponsored candidates. The first Lib–Lab candidate to stand was George Odger in the Southwark by-election of 1870. In addition, several small socialist groups had formed around this time, with the intention of linking the movement to political policies. Among these were the Independent Labour Party, the intellectual and middle-class Fabian Society, the Marxist Social Democratic Federation and the Scottish Labour Party. At the 1895 general election, the Independent Labour Party put up 28 candidates but won only 44,325 votes. Keir Hardie, the leader of the party, believed that to obtain success in parliamentary elections, it would be necessary to join with other left-wing groups. Hardie's roots as a lay preacher contributed to an ethos in the party which led to the comment by 1950s General Secretary Morgan Phillips that "Socialism in Britain owed more to Methodism than Marx".
In 1899, a Doncaster member of the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants, Thomas R. Steels, proposed in his union branch that the Trade Union Congress call a special conference to bring together all left-wing organisations and form them into a single body that would sponsor Parliamentary candidates; the motion was passed at all stages by the TUC, the proposed conference was held at the Memorial Hall on Farringdon Street on 26 and 27 February 1900. The meeting was attended by a broad spectrum of working-class and left-wing organisations—trades unions represented about one third of the membership of the TUC delegates. After a debate, the 129 delegates passed Hardie's motion to establish "a distinct Labour group in Parliament, who shall have their own whips, agree upon their policy, which must embrace a readiness to cooperate with any party which for the time being may be engaged in promoting legislation in the direct interests of labour." This created an association called the Labour Representation Committee, meant to co-ordinate attempts to support MPs sponsored by trade unions and represent the working-class population.
It had no single leader, in the absence of one, the Independent Labour Party nominee Ramsay MacDonald was elected as Secretary. He had the difficult task of keeping the various strands of opinions in the LRC united; the October 1900 "Khaki election" came too soon for the new party to campaign effectively. Only 15 candidatures were sponsored. Support for the LRC was boosted by the 1901 Taff Vale Case, a dispute between strikers and a railway company that ended with the union being ordered to pay £23,000 damages for a strike; the judgement made strikes illegal since employers could recoup the cost of lost business from the unions. The apparent acquiescence of the Conservative Government of Arthur Balfour to industrial and business interests intensified support for the LRC against a government that appeared to have little concern for the industrial proletariat and its problems. In the 1906 election, the LRC won 29 seats—helped by a secret 1903 pact between Ramsay MacDonald and Liberal Chief Whip Herbert Gladstone that aimed to avoid splitting the opposition vote between Labour and Liberal candidates in the interest of removing the Conservatives from office.
In their first meeting after the election the group's Members of Parliament decided to adop
Black British people are British citizens of either Black British African background, or of Black British African-Caribbean background and include people with mixed ancestry from either group. The term developed in the 1950s, referring to the Black British West Indian people from the former Caribbean British colonies in the West Indies now referred to as the Windrush Generation, people from Africa, who are residents of the United Kingdom and who consider themselves British; the term black has had a number of applications as a racial and political label and may be used in a wider sociopolitical context to encompass a broader range of non-European ethnic minority populations in Britain. This has become a controversial definition. "Black British" is one of various self-designation entries used in official UK ethnicity classifications. Black residents constituted around 3 per cent of the United Kingdom's population in 2011; the figures have increased from the 1991 census when 1.63% of the population were recorded as Black or Black British to 1.15 million residents in 2001, or 2 per cent of the population, this further increased to just over 1.9 million in 2011.
Over 95% of Black British live in England in England's larger urban areas, with most Black British living in Greater London. The term has most been used to refer to Black people of New Commonwealth origin, of both West African and South Asian descent. For example, Southall Black Sisters was established in 1979 "to meet the needs of black women". Note that "Asian" in the British context refers to people of South Asian ancestry. "Black" was used in this inclusive political sense to mean "non-white British". In the 1970s, a time of rising activism against racial discrimination, the main communities so described were from the British West Indies and the Indian subcontinent. Solidarity against racism and discrimination sometimes extended the term at that time to the Irish population of Britain as well. Several organisations continue to use the term inclusively, such as the Black Arts Alliance, who extend their use of the term to Latin Americans and all refugees, the National Black Police Association.
The official UK Census has separate self-designation entries for respondents to identify as "Asian British", "Black British" and "Other ethnic group". Due to the Indian diaspora and in particular Idi Amin's expulsion of Asians from Uganda in 1972, many British Asians are from families that had lived for several generations in the British West Indies or Southeast Africa; the 1991 UK census was the first to include a question on ethnicity. As of the 2011 UK Census, the Office for National Statistics and the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency allow people in England and Wales and Northern Ireland who self-identify as "Black" to select "Black African", "Black Caribbean" or "Any other Black/African/Caribbean background" tick boxes. For the 2011 Scottish census, the General Register Office for Scotland established new, separate "African, African Scottish or African British" and "Caribbean, Caribbean Scottish or Caribbean British" tick boxes for individuals in Scotland from Africa and the Caribbean who do not identify as "Black, Black Scottish or Black British".
In all of the UK censuses, persons with multiple familial ancestries can write in their respective ethnicities under a "Mixed or multiple ethnic groups" option, which includes additional "White and Black Caribbean" or "White and Black African" tick boxes in England and Northern Ireland. Black British was a term for those Black and mixed-race people in Sierra Leone who were descendants of migrants from England and Canada and identified as British, they are the descendants of black people who lived in England in the 18th century and freed Black American slaves who fought for the Crown in the American Revolutionary War. In 1787, hundreds of London's black poor agreed to go to this West African colony on the condition that they would retain the status of British subjects, live in freedom under the protection of the British Crown, be defended by the Royal Navy. Making this fresh start with them were some white people, including lovers and widows of the black men. In addition, nearly 1200 Black Loyalists, former American slaves, freed and resettled in Nova Scotia chose to join the new colony.
There is evidence of people with African ancestry in Roman Britain. A craniometric study of 22 individuals from Southwark, Roman London, found that four of them appeared to be of African ancestry, the isotopic analysis of their bones suggested childhoods spent in a climate warmer than Roman Britain. Analysis of autosomal DNA from four individuals from Roman London found that one had Black ancestry, with brown eyes and dark brown or black hair. Bone isotopes suggested that this individual, a male aged over 45 years, had spent his childhood in the London region; the Ivory Bangle Lady whose rich burial was found in York had cranial features that hinted at a'mixed' white/black ancestry. Her sarcophagus was made of stone and contained a jet bracelet and an ivory bangle, indicating great wealth for the time. There is written evidence of the presence in Roman Britain of residents from multiethnic Romanised North Africa; the inscriptions suggest. Some were in the upper echelons of society. According to the Augustan History, Roman emperor Septimus Severus supposedly
British African-Caribbean people
British African-Caribbean people are residents of the United Kingdom whose ancestors were indigenous to Africa. As immigration to the United Kingdom from Africa increased in the 1990s, the term has sometimes been used to include UK residents of African origin or as a term to define all Black British residents, though the phrase African and Caribbean has more been used to cover such a broader grouping; the most common and traditional use of the term African-Caribbean community is in reference to groups of residents continuing aspects of Caribbean culture and traditions in the UK. The African-Caribbean population in the UK come from the Islands in the British West Indies such as Jamaica and Tobago, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Grenada and Barbuda, Saint Lucia, Montserrat, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and Belize. African-Caribbean communities are present throughout the United Kingdom's major cities, the UK Census identified the largest concentration is in Birmingham followed by London. Manchester, Nottingham, Luton, Leicester, Gloucester, Huddersfield, Sheffield and Cardiff.
In these cities, the community is traditionally associated with a particular area, such as Brixton, Stonebridge, Lewisham, Peckham in London, West Bowling and Heaton in Bradford, Chapeltown in Leeds, St. Pauls in Bristol, or Handsworth and Aston in Birmingham or Moss Side in Manchester, St Ann's in Nottingham and Toxteth in Liverpool. According to the 2011 UK Census, the largest number of African-Caribbean people are now found in Croydon, South London. A glossary published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health with the intention of stimulating debate about the development of better and more internationally applicable terms to describe ethnicity and race, suggests a definition of Afro-Caribbean/African Caribbean as, "A person of African ancestral origins whose family settled in the Caribbean before emigrating and who self identifies, or is identified, as Afro-Caribbean". A survey of the use of terms to describe people of African descent in medical research notes that: "The term African Caribbean/Afro-Caribbean when used in Europe and North America refers to people with African ancestral origins who migrated via the Caribbean islands".
It suggests that use of the term in the UK is inconsistent, with some researchers using it to describe people of Black and of Caribbean descent, whereas others use it to refer to those of either West African or Caribbean background. The British Sociological Association's guidelines on ethnicity and race state that "African-Caribbean has replaced the term Afro-Caribbean to refer to Caribbean peoples and those of Caribbean origin who are of African descent. There is now a view that the term should not be hyphenated and that indeed, the differences between such groups mean the people of African and Caribbean origins should be referred to separately"; the Guardian and Observer style guide prescribes the use of "African-Caribbean" for use in the two newspapers noting "not Afro-Caribbean". Sociologist Peter J. Aspinall argues that the term "Black" has been reclaimed by people of African and Caribbean origin in the UK, noting that in a 1992 health survey, 17 per cent of 722 African–Caribbeans surveyed, including 36 percent of those aged 16 to 29, described themselves as "Black British".
This, he suggests, "appears to be a pragmatic and spontaneous response to the wish to describe an allegiance to a'British' identity and the diminishing importance of ties with a homeland in the Caribbean". From the 16th century to the 19th century, enslaved Africans were shipped by European slave traders to British colonies in the Caribbean and British North America, as well as French, Danish and Portuguese colonies. New World slavery was focused on the extraction of gold and other precious raw materials. Africans were later set to work on the vast cotton and sugar plantations in the Americas for the economic benefit of these colonial powers and their plantocracy. One impact of the American Revolution was the differing historical development of African-American and African-Caribbean people. Whereas the American colonies had established slavery by positive laws, slavery did not exist under English common law and was thus prohibited in England; the much lauded British Afro-Caribbean Ignatius Sancho was among the leading British abolitionists in the 18th century, in 1783 an abolitionist movement spread throughout Britain to end slavery throughout the British Empire, with the poet William Cowper writing in 1785: "We have no slaves at home – Then why abroad?
Slaves cannot breathe in England. They touch our country, their shackles fall. That's noble, bespeaks a nation proud, and jealous of the blessing. Spread it And let it circulate through every vein." There are records of small communities in the ports of Cardiff, Liverpool and South Shields dating back to the mid-18th century. These communities were formed by freed slaves following the abolition of slavery. Typical occupations of the early migrants were coachmen. Prominent African-Caribbean people in Britain during the 19th century include: William Davidson, Cato Street Conspirator Rev. George Cousens, a Jamaican who became minister of Cradley Heath Baptist Church in 1837 Mary Seacole
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