|A view of Saint Aubin, Jersey.|
Jersey is part of the British Isles, which is a cluster of islands found in the North Atlantic Ocean covering an area of 121,684 square miles. The island is regarded as a dependent of the British Crown, and as a result, it is guarded and well catered for by the UK government. The Island of Jersey is located at just 22 kilometers off the coast of France and 137 kilometers south from the English coast. Jersey is not technically part of the EU, but the free trade of goods is allowed between Jersey and the European Union.
Formation of the Isles
The British Isles were formed due to the movement and collision of tectonic plates. Mountains were formed as a result, and they are found in Ireland and Britain, especially in the north. The islands took their distinct shape after years of being exposed to glaciations and Great Britain, and Ireland became the largest by size. Concerning population, the two islands had the highest number of people living in them. Jersey Island is certainly not the largest since it is only 8 kilometers long and 14.5 kilometers wide. There are twelve parishes found in Jersey.
Governance of Jersey
Jersey has a lieutenant governor who is in charge of the island as the representative of the Queen. Jersey has a government headed by a Prime Minister and a legislature comprised of 49 representatives who are elected by the eligible voting population. The government of Jersey has the powers to issue driving licenses, enforce tax policies and other laws enshrined in the Jersey constitution. The legal system of Jersey has a similarity to that of the United Kingdom when you look at the Royal Court. The court is equal to that of the Crown Court and High Court because it handles both civil and criminal matters.
History of Jersey
The path to becoming a self-governing island was not easy. After the war of 1204 in which King James’ army was defeated by the King Philippe-Augustine’s of France at the battle of Roune, King James worked hard to convince the neighboring isles not to align themselves with the victorious French King. He did this by making promises and threats of war if his persuasion failed. Among his promises was giving the islands the right to govern themselves. By self-governance, the islands would have their government and legislature to make their laws, and the UK would handle the defense of the island against possible French aggression. The Islanders would also pick twelve of their best men to be jurats and sit with the bailiff to form the royal court, and a warden would be appointed by King George to be governor on his behalf.
Jersey Island today
English is widely spoken followed by French, Portuguese, Polish, and Jerriais. The tax laws of the islands are among the best in the world for business because no VAT tax is charged. However, income tax and other taxes are collected to raise the revenue needed to run the government. The climate is temperate meaning that it is warmer with more sunshine experienced.
•By Vic Lang'at Junior
•culled from www.worldatlas.com