Great Britain Country Overview
Where is United Kingdom located? The island of Great Britain is located in the northwest of the European continent and is the largest island in Europe. On the time zone map, which shows countries in their respective world time zones, Great Britain is located in an area where the time exactly coincides with Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). This time zone is called “Greenwich Mean Time”. This means that although the UK and Germany are both in Europe, there is a one-hour time difference, as Germany is in the “Central European Time Zone”, which is one hour ahead of the coordinated world clock. In the summer in Great Britain the time changes to daylight saving time.
As of 2023, the latest population of United Kingdom is 65,761,117, based on our calculation of the current data from UN (United Nations).
|Population growth rate||0.49%|
|Birth rate||12.10 births per 1,000 people|
|65 years and above||18.19%|
|Median age||40.40 years|
|Gender ratio (Male to Female)||0.99|
|Population density||269.94 residents per km²|
|80% English, 10% Scots, 4% Northern Irish, 2% Welsh, minorities from the West Indies, India and Pakistan – proportion of foreigners 2015: 8.4%|
|Anglicans 30%; Catholics (Roman Catholic) 21%; Presbyterians 14%; Other Christians (including Methodists) 15%; Muslims 11%; Others (including 500,000 Sikh, 500,000 Hindis and 350,000 Jews) 8%|
|Human Development Index (HDI)||0.920|
|HDI ranking||15th out of 194|
People in United Kingdom
The residents of Great Britain are called British. Depending on the part of the country, the British are also English, Scots, Welsh or Northern Irish. The English make up the bulk of the population: 84 percent.
Great Britain was once a world empire and the greatest colonial power on earth. So it had a lot of colonies. These included Canada and Australia, India and Pakistan, several islands in the Caribbean (such as Jamaica) and many countries in Africa. After the Second World War, most of these countries became independent.
However, many people from the former colonies came to Britain, especially in the 1950s and 1960s, and now live in the country with their descendants. That is why you see so many nationalities when you are in the UK. The largest group of immigrants come from Africa or the Caribbean (three percent of the population). The Indians make up the largest immigration group among the Asians, followed by people from Pakistan and Bangladesh as well as China (total from Asia: seven percent).
65 million people live in the UK. Most of them live in England, namely 55 million. 5 million are Scots, 2 million are Welsh and just under 2 million are Northern Irish.
83 out of 100 people live in a city. that is a very high proportion of city dwellers. The centers are London, Manchester and Liverpool as well as Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland.
With 1.8 children per woman, the birth rate is rather high compared to other European countries. The average age of the British is 40.6 years. Life expectancy is 83.5 years for women and 78.8 years for men.
Languages in United Kingdom
English is spoken in the UK. It is written with the Latin alphabet (which you also use for German). English is also known as a world language because it is spoken by a great many people as their mother tongue, including in the USA, Australia and Canada. In addition, many people learn English as their first foreign language. You probably already know a little English, right?
The English spoken in Great Britain is also known as British English. It differs from the English spoken in the USA or in Australia or in South Africa. So you use different words or write words differently. “Biscuit” means, for example with the British biscuit, with the Americans cookie.
But even within Great Britain, the spoken English is very different. It’s just like in Germany, where there are also many dialects. People speak differently in Scotland than in the south of England.
A special dialect is the Cockney that is spoken in London. The Cockney has a funny peculiarity: the word you want to say is replaced by one that rhymes with it, often only with the first part that doesn’t rhyme itself! As a result, what was said no longer makes sense to someone who does not speak Cockney.
For example, instead of “I haven’t seen you for years.” (I haven’t seen you for years) they say “I haven’t seen you for donkeys” (literally: I haven’t seen you in donkeys). Donkey ears rhymes with years. Or instead of “I’m watching the telly” you say “I’m watching the lisa” because “Liza Minelli” rhymes with telly (that’s the name of a famous actress and singer). Maybe you can invent an example in German!
Gaelic, Welsh, Irish
In addition to English, the respective national language is also spoken in the other parts of the country. Gaelic is spoken in Scotland, Welsh in Wales and Irish in Northern Ireland. Road signs can be found in both languages.
Some words are very similar in German and English. This is useful because it makes it easier for us to learn it. For example: apple and apple, butter and butter, cat and cat. This is so because English and German belong to the same language family (the West Germanic languages) and therefore have the same roots.
Religions in United Kingdom
Almost 60 percent of the population are Christians. Most of them belong to the Anglican Church. Due to the large number of immigrants, Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs also live in the country.