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Crown dependencies

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Location of the Crown dependencies (red) and the United Kingdom (dark grey)
Location of the Crown dependencies (red) and the United Kingdom (dark grey)
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
the United Kingdom
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg
United Kingdom portal

The Crown dependencies (French: Dépendances de la Couronne, Manx: Croghaneyn-crooin) are three island territories off the coast of Great Britain that are self-governing possessions of the Crown: the Bailiwick of Guernsey, the Bailiwick of Jersey and the Isle of Man. They do not form part of either the United Kingdom or the British Overseas Territories.[1][2] Internationally, the dependencies are considered "territories for which the United Kingdom is responsible", rather than sovereign states.[3] As a result, they are not member states of the Commonwealth of Nations.[4] However, they do have relationships with the Commonwealth, the European Union, and other international organisations, and are members of the British–Irish Council. They have their own teams in the Commonwealth Games. They are not part of the European Union (EU), although they are within the EU's customs area. The Isle of Man (along with the United Kingdom) is within the EU's VAT area.

As the Crown dependencies are not sovereign states, the power to pass legislation affecting the islands ultimately rests with the government of the United Kingdom (though this is rarely done without the consent of the dependencies, and the right to do so is disputed). However they each have their own legislative assembly, with the power to legislate on many local matters with the assent of the Crown (Privy Council, or in the case of the Isle of Man in certain circumstances the Lieutenant-Governor).[5] In each case, the head of government is referred to as the Chief Minister.

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Hi, everyone. In this lesson we're going to look at the geography of the United Kingdom and we're also going to look at some culture related to all the different terms we use to describe Great Britain, England... All these different words, when do we use them? So we're going to break it down and look at that. Let's start with the name. The official name is United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, but often we just say "UK" because it's such a long country name, so we just say UK. I drew a map. My map is not to scale. And I tried my best, but it was hard to do it with the pens on the board, so we're going to show you a correct map. We've got England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. And the dotted line shows where Northern Ireland ends. This part is part of the United Kingdom; this part is not. More on that later. So, the UK is a sovereign state or we could say a sovereign country. This means that they make all their own laws, and they govern themselves. So, the UK is a sovereign state or a sovereign country. But the reason that's confusing is that we... When we're talking or when we're describing a place in the world, we talk about Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland as being countries. So, you think: "Is...? If the UK is a country, are Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland also a country?" Well, they are, but they don't make their own laws. So, we have a word for it and we can call them "constituent countries". We can say England is a constituent country of the United Kingdom. We can say Scotland is a constituent country of the United Kingdom, etc. Okay. Now it gets more confusing because when we're talking about the UK, we can say it's made up of those countries - Scotland, England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. We can also say it's made up of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain is this land mass, this island shape, here; and Northern Ireland is part of the land mass, the island of Ireland. So, if we put this bit and this bit together, we get the United Kingdom. Great Britain has three constituent countries. Remember, this is Great Britain, Scotland, England, and Wales make up Great Britain. Britain... Now we're getting smaller. This is Britain, England, and Wales. So, I can say: "I'm from Britain", because I'm from... I was born about here in London, so I can say: "I'm from Britain". Now, we have another term called "The British Isles". The British Isles is a geographic term, so we use it to describe a place on the map. And the British Isles would include everything we see here. Actually, perhaps except these islands. These islands are called Jersey and Guernsey, and they're closer to France. But the British Isles could describe everything here in a geographic sense. And I wasn't able to draw all the islands, but there's actually over 6,000 islands up in Scotland, some down here as well. So, many, many islands. But the trouble with that term, to say the British Isles is that some people in Ireland don't like that term to describe... To include them because it makes it sound like Ireland, it's British, even though Ireland is independent. Ireland is a sovereign country by itself. So some people object to calling this the British Isles. If you do object to calling it the British Isles, you can say the North Atlantic-I can never say this word-Archipelago. Archipelago. And this means, like, collection of islands. And the place in the world is in the North Atlantic. Right. So, now, already mentioned it a bit, but the Republic of Ireland... The Republic of Ireland is not part of the United Kingdom, and it is a sovereign state. So, Ireland, they make their own laws there, they have their own government. They're a completely separate country and a separate state to the United Kingdom. Next, it's important to point out that England is not the same as saying the UK or Great Britain, because sometimes people can put the idea together in their head that England represents all of it. Perhaps because the government is in London, people might think: "Oh, England. You can say England to mean all the countries, but it's not correct to say that." Also, something I want to say about Isle of Man - this is the Isle of Man; and about the Bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey, which are down here. So, these islands are not part of the United Kingdom, but we have the same monarch at the moment - that's the queen, so we have the same queen as them, but they're not part of the UK, and they can make up their own laws and they can govern themselves. And the laws are different, so they run themselves one way; and in the Isle of Man, they run themselves in another way. So, I think that in the United Kingdom we've got one of the most complicated ways to describe our geography. When we come next, we're going to look at the more cultural differences between the different parts of the United Kingdom. I want to add a note that this... I'm filming this in 2017, so things I'm talking about here could change, and that depends on things, like: "Does Scotland want to have its own independence from the United Kingdom? And if they have a referendum, if they vote, would they want to leave?" So, at the time of making the video, this is how things are in the UK, and I'm going to look at what the countries of the UK share; and after, what's different about all of them. So, starting here, everybody born in one of the countries of the UK gets a passport that's exactly the same; same colour, and on the passport, it says: "British Citizen". Now, I'm English and my passport is a burgundy colour, and says "British Citizen". But I found out that if you're Welsh or you're Scottish, you might like to buy an unofficial cover for your British passport, so that it looks like you've got a Welsh passport. Now, it wouldn't be accepted when you go to present your passport, but perhaps that would... You would like... You'd like that idea of having a separate passport, so you can purchase such things on the internet, if that's what you're after. Next, we have the same official and national language, which is of course English, and I'm speaking now in English to you. We have the same government, and the government is in Westminster, in London; the Houses of Parliament. So, where the laws are made in Westminster, they are sovereign over all the laws made in... Okay, I was going to mention it later, but Scotland and... There are some devolved governments in the countries of the UK, in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, so they can make some laws about some issues for themselves, but even... Even though they have their own government, the government in Westminster in London, is sovereign. So, what they say has the most power over the other government. Okay? We share the same monarch. At the moment, that's Queen Elizabeth II. We share the same flag, which is the Union Jack flag. We use the same money, which is... We use the same currency, which is the Great British Pound Sterling. We share the same National anthem, which is: "God Save The Queen." And in the Olympics, everybody in England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland can compete under Team Great Britain, if they choose. Now, this is an unusual choice of name for the team of the Olympics, because if you remember, Great Britain doesn't include Northern Ireland. So, where do Northern Ireland compete in the Olympics? Well, they can choose to be part of team Great Britain, or they can choose to be in Team Ireland, if they want. So, they get a choice. What's different between the countries of the UK now? So, we share the same currency-Great British Pound Sterling-but if you go to Scotland or Northern Ireland (I forgot to write, there - Northern Ireland) they have different bank notes. So, their money actually looks different or some of their money. In Scotland, you will often still see English money. If you come down from Scotland with your Scottish money and try and buy something in a pub or a fish and chip shop in England, you will be looked at very suspiciously with your Scottish money, and people will be checking it, holding it up, and they won't want to accept your Scottish money here. It is legal to accept it, but it's not something that we see that often in England, so be prepared for some suspicious looks, if you want to pay with the Scottish money. What's different also is... Okay, we all speak English, but the dialects can be so different that when... If you're speaking to somebody up in Scotland or you're speaking to Northern... Someone in Northern Ireland or Wales even, they can sound so different, it's like a different dialect of English. But in some cases it's also... In some cases it's also different language. If you go to Wales, many people in Wales speak Welsh, and things like their road signs in Wales are in two languages at the same time. They have two official languages; they have... In Wales, they have Welsh and they also have English. In Northern Ireland, a percentage of the people will speak Gaelic. Now, they're... I'm not going to talk about the cultural differences, but I will say that there is a sense of a different culture or a different identity that people have in the different countries of the United Kingdom. So, an English person considers themselves to have a different culture to a Scottish person, and the Scottish person feels different to a Welsh person. And, again, they feel different to a Northern Irish person. So, although everybody has the same passport that says "British Citizen", there are differences between the country that people are aware of and are often proud of the differences between their countries also. The countries of the United Kingdom have their individual flags, which you may see at things, like, football competitions. And together, when you put these flags on top of each other, they make up the Union Jack flag - that famous flag that you're used to saying. However, I must add something, here. It's not all the countries. It's an old flag, so what it represents is the countries a long time ago. And that was when England, Scotland, and Ireland were in a union, and that's what the Union Jack represents. You might ask: "Well, why isn't Wales in there?" That's because at that time, Wales wasn't considered an independent country; it was just part of England back in those times. And you might also say: "Well, why don't we change the national...? The Union Jack, and put a Welsh dragon on it or why don't we change it because it includes the whole of Ireland?" That's a good question. Many people argue about such things. And perhaps because the Union Jack is such a well-known symbol and many people... Even people not from the UK would like to buy souvenirs and t-shirts with the Union Jack on. Perhaps for those reasons people don't... The government doesn't think about changing it. That's what I think. Let me know what you think in the comments. Moving on to national anthems: "God Save The Queen" is for everyone; everybody in the UK can sing that as their national anthem. However, the Welsh also have a Welsh national anthem which they may prefer to sing. This is in the Welsh language: "Mae Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau". I have no idea how to pronounce it in Welsh, but that's theirs. Scottish people do not have their own official national anthem; yet, they do have an unofficial one, which is "Scotland the Brave". England and Northern Ireland do not have their own separate, individual national anthems, either official or unofficial they don't have. Also, all these countries have their own football teams, and they compete as themselves in the big football competitions. So, considering what's... What countries share and what's different, I want to talk lastly about various questions of identity about: What does it mean to be an English person, or a Scottish person, versus a British person? And one way to look at that is to look at the data of the 2011... 2011 census. This is something that happens every 10 years where the government asks people lots of questions, and they collect information to see: "How...? How are people changing? How do they live their lives differently?" And some of the questions in the census ask people about their identity, so they will ask them: "Do you feel English or do you feel more British?" So, here are the statistics from that census. Census. Back then in 2011, 60% of English people said they consider themselves to be English only. So, these people do not consider themselves British. In their minds they don't have so much to do with Scotland, or Wales, or Northern Ireland. Yeah, they're in the UK, but they don't consider themselves British, as if we're all together in a group. It's like English first. 62% of Scottish people consider themselves to be Scottish only. So, that's slightly more than in England. And this is an interesting thing to think about because there are people in Scotland who wish for their own independence from the United Kingdom. So they would like to separate from the United Kingdom, and many of them would like to join the European Union on their own, and not be part of the United Kingdom. So a slightly high... We could... We could say, if we... If we compare the percentages, there, that in Scotland people are slightly more... What would you say? Would it be patriotic - love of their own country, or nationalistic - loving their Scotla-...? Their country first before the United Kingdom? And 58% of Welsh people consider themselves Welsh only. Now, that's kind of a surprise to me because in my life experiences, those times when I have met Welsh people... Okay, I'm making it sound like a rare thing. I've met many Welsh people, but in my experience they tend to mention Wales a lot, and the Welsh language, and what it's like in Wales and how Wales is different. So I would have thought, based on my experience, that there would be more people in Wales who consider themselves only Welsh or Welsh first. So, now I want to mention the difference between who's... Who's saying they're British and who's saying they're not British. So, 14%... Only 14% of white British ethnicity say that they're British. Okay? So I'll break that down. Someone who lives in England, Scotland, Wales, or Northern Island who looks white and has... As far as I know, haven't come from somewhere else, only 14% of those people would say that they're British. They would put their own English or Scottish or Welsh first; whereas the younger generation, the younger people of today and more people who live in cities where it's a lot more diverse as people who've immigrated from other countries, and their parents before them or grandparents before them, in the cities, a higher proportion of people will say that they have the British identity. So, just going back to a point about this: If it's the 14% is ... If you think about it this way: The older... The much older generation, they were alive during the war. Some of them were... Some of them are still alive. They're still living, so they remember a different time, and they remember different kind of Britain and a different kind of place in the world. So there can be quite big differences in attitudes between the younger... The younger folk and the older folk over here. So, what you can do now is go and do the quiz on this lesson, and I'll see you soon. Bye.



"The Crown" is defined differently in each Crown Dependency. In Jersey, statements in the 21st century of the constitutional position by the Law Officers of the Crown define it as the "Crown in right of Jersey",[6] with all Crown land in the Bailiwick of Jersey belonging to the Crown in right of Jersey and not to the Crown Estate of the United Kingdom.[7] Legislation of the Isle of Man defines the "Crown in right of the Isle of Man" as being separate from the "Crown in right of the United Kingdom".[8] In Guernsey, legislation refers to the "Crown in right of the Bailiwick",[9] and the Law Officers of the Crown of Guernsey submitted that "The Crown in this context ordinarily means the Crown in right of the république of the Bailiwick of Guernsey"[10] and that this comprises "the collective governmental and civic institutions, established by and under the authority of the Monarch, for the governance of these Islands, including the States of Guernsey and legislatures in the other Islands, the Royal Court and other courts, the Lieutenant Governor, Parish authorities, and the Crown acting in and through the Privy Council."[11] This constitutional concept is also worded as the "Crown in right of the Bailiwick of Guernsey".[10]

Name Location Title of Monarch Area Population Island Arms Capital Airport
Bailiwick of
English Channel Duke of Normandy 78 km2 (30 sq mi) 65,849
Flag of Guernsey.svg

Saint Peter Port
(capital of the whole Bailiwick
and of Guernsey also)
Guernsey Airport
Flag of Herm.svg

(none) (none)
Flag of Alderney.svg

Saint Anne Alderney Airport
Flag of Sark.svg

The Seigneurie (de facto;
Sark does not have a capital city)
Flag of Brecqhou.GIF

(none) (none)
of Jersey
English Channel Duke of Normandy 118.2 km2 (46 sq mi) 100,080
Flag of Jersey.svg

Saint Helier Jersey Airport
Isle of Man Irish Sea Lord of Mann 572 km2 (221 sq mi) 84,997
Flag of the Isle of Mann.svg

Isle of Man
Douglas Isle of Man Airport; Andreas Airfield

Channel Islands: Bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey

Since 1290,[12] the Channel Islands have been governed as

Each Bailiwick is a Crown dependency and each is headed by a Bailiff, with a Lieutenant Governor representing the Crown in each Bailiwick. Each Bailiwick has its own legal and healthcare systems, and its own separate immigration policies, with "local status" in one Bailiwick having no jurisdiction in the other. The two Bailiwicks exercise bilateral double taxation treaties. Since 1961, the Bailiwicks have had separate courts of appeal, but generally the Bailiff of each Bailiwick has been appointed to serve on the panel of appellate judges for the other Bailiwick.

Bailiwick of Guernsey

The Bailiwick of Guernsey comprises three separate jurisdictions:

  • Guernsey, which includes also the nearby islands of Herm and Jethou, and other smaller uninhabited islands.
  • Sark, which also includes the nearby island of Brecqhou, and other smaller uninhabited islands.
  • Alderney, including smaller surrounding uninhabited islands.
Brecqhou island
Brecqhou island

The parliament of Guernsey is the States of Deliberation, the parliament of Sark is called the Chief Pleas, and the parliament of Alderney is called the States of Alderney. The three parliaments together can also approve joint Bailiwick-wide legislation that applies in those parts of the Bailiwick whose parliaments approve it.

Guernsey issues its own coins and banknotes:

These circulate freely in both Bailiwicks alongside UK coinage and English and Scottish banknotes. They are not legal tender within the UK.[13]

There are no political parties in any of the parliaments; candidates stand for election as independents.[14]

Guernsey has its own separate international vehicle registrations (GBG – Guernsey, GBA – Alderney), internet domain (.gg – Guernsey), and ISO 3166-2 codes, first reserved on behalf of the Universal Postal Union (GGY – Guernsey) and then added officially by the International Organization for Standardization on 29 March 2006. In any case the GBG on a numberplate is only put on the number plate of a car or motorbike at the request of the vehicle owner and is not compulsory, however a motorbike/scooter can have an identical number to a car, e.g. 5432 on 2 wheels and on 4 wheels.

Bailiwick of Jersey

The Bailiwick of Jersey consists of the island of Jersey and a number of surrounding uninhabited islands.

The parliament is the States of Jersey, the first known mention of which is in a document of 1497.[15] The States of Jersey Law 2005 introduced the post of Chief Minister of Jersey, abolished the Bailiff's power of dissent to a resolution of the States and the Lieutenant Governor's power of veto over a resolution of the States, established that any Order in Council or Act of the United Kingdom proposed to apply to Jersey must be referred to the States so that the States can express their views on it.[16]

Jersey issues its own coins and banknotes:

These circulate freely in both Bailiwicks alongside UK coinage and English and Scottish banknotes. They are not legal tender within the UK but are legal currency backed by deposits at the Bank of England.

There are few political parties, as candidates generally stand for election as independents (but see List of political parties in Jersey).

Jersey has its own separate international vehicle registration (GBJ – Jersey), internet domain (.je – Jersey), and ISO 3166-2 codes, first reserved on behalf of the Universal Postal Union (JEY – Jersey) and then added officially by the International Organization for Standardization on 29 March 2006.

Isle of Man

The Isle of Man located in the Irish Sea
The Isle of Man located in the Irish Sea

The Isle of Man's Tynwald claims to be the world's oldest parliament in continuous existence, dating back to 979. (However, it does not claim to be the oldest parliament, as Iceland's Althing dates back to 930.) It consists of a popularly elected House of Keys and an indirectly elected Legislative Council, which may sit separately or jointly to consider pieces of legislation, which, when passed into law, are known as "Acts of Tynwald". Candidates mostly stand for election to the Keys as independents, rather than being selected by political parties. There is a Council of Ministers headed by a Chief Minister.[17]

The Isle of Man issues its own coins and banknotes:

These circulate freely on the island alongside British coinage (as well as coinage from the Channel Islands and Gibraltar) and English, Northern Irish and Scottish banknotes.

The Isle of Man, unlike the other Crown dependencies, has a Common Purse Agreement with the United Kingdom.

Isle of Man Post issues its own stamps and derives significant revenue from the sale of special issues to collectors.

The Isle of Man has its own separate international vehicle registration (GBM – Isle of Man), internet domain (.im – Isle of Man), and ISO 3166-2 codes, first reserved on behalf of the Universal Postal Union (IMN – Isle of Man) and then added officially by the International Organization for Standardization on 29 March 2006. In addition, since 2008 the Isle of Man has used the aircraft registration M-.

Relationship with the British Crown

In each Crown dependency, the monarch is represented by a Lieutenant Governor, but this post is largely ceremonial. Since 2010 the Lieutenant Governors of each Crown dependency have been recommended to the Crown by a panel in each respective Crown dependency; this replaced the previous system of the appointments being made by the Crown on the recommendation of UK ministers.[18][19] In 2005, it was decided in the Isle of Man to replace the Lieutenant Governor with a Crown Commissioner, but this decision was reversed before it was implemented.

All "insular" legislation has to receive the approval of the "Queen in Council", in effect, the Privy Council in London.[20] Certain types of domestic legislation in the Isle of Man, however, may be signed into law by the Lieutenant Governor, using delegated powers, without having to pass through the Privy Council. In Jersey, provisional legislation of an administrative nature may be adopted by means of triennial regulations (renewable after three years), without requiring the assent of the Privy Council.[21] Much legislation, in practice, is effected by means of secondary legislation under the authority of prior laws or Orders in Council.

Bailiwicks of Guernsey and Jersey

"La Reine, Notre Duc" (The Queen, Our Duke): title of a Diamond Jubilee exhibition at the Jersey Arts Centre in 2012
"La Reine, Notre Duc" (The Queen, Our Duke): title of a Diamond Jubilee exhibition at the Jersey Arts Centre in 2012

The Channel Islands are part of the territory annexed by the Duchy of Normandy in 933 from the Duchy of Brittany. This territory was added to the grant of land given in settlement by the King of France in 911 to the Viking raiders who had sailed up the Seine almost to the walls of Paris.

William the Conqueror, Duke of Normandy, claimed the title King of England in 1066, following the death of Edward the Confessor, and secured the claim through the Norman conquest of England.

Subsequent marriages between Kings of England and French nobles meant that Kings of England had title to more French lands than the King of France. When the King of France asserted his feudal right of patronage, the then-King of England, King John, fearing he would be imprisoned should he attend, failed to fulfil his obligation.

In 1204 the title and lands of the Duchy of Normandy and his other French possessions were stripped from King John of England by the King of France. The Channel Islands remained in the possession of the King of England, who ruled them as Duke of Normandy until the Treaty of Paris in 1259.

John's son, Henry III, renounced the title of Duke of Normandy by that treaty, and none of his successors ever revived it. The Channel Islands continued to be governed by the Kings of England as French fiefs, distinct from Normandy, until the Hundred Years' War, during which they were definitively separated from France.

At no time did the Channel Islands form part of the Kingdom of England, and they remained legally separate, though under the same monarch, through the subsequent unions of Scotland and England (1707), and Ireland (1801). Elizabeth II reigns over the Channel Islands directly, and not by virtue of her role as monarch of the United Kingdom. No specific title is associated with her role as monarch of the Channel Islands, however; she is popularly referred to (even on a Buckingham Palace website) as "Duke of Normandy"[22] (not "Duchess")[23] but this anachronistic title has no basis in law.[24][25] The monarch has been described, in Jersey, as the "Queen in right of Jersey",[26] and in legislation as the "Sovereign of the Bailiwick of Jersey" and "Sovereign in right of the Bailiwick of Jersey".[27]

A unique constitutional position has arisen as successive monarchs have confirmed the liberties and privileges of the Bailiwicks, often referring to the so-called Constitutions of King John, a legendary document supposed to have been granted by King John in the aftermath of 1204. Governments of the Bailiwicks have generally tried to avoid testing the limits of the unwritten constitution by avoiding conflict with British governments.

Following the restoration of King Charles II, who had spent part of his exile in Jersey, the Channel Islands were given the right to set their own customs duties, referred to by the Jersey Legal French term as impôts.

Isle of Man

In the Isle of Man the British monarch is Lord of Mann, a title variously held by Norse, Scottish and English kings and nobles (the English nobles in feudality to the English Crown) until it was revested into the British monarchy in 1765. The title "Lord" is today used irrespective of the gender of the person who holds it.

Relationship with the UK

Crown dependencies have the international status of "territories for which the United Kingdom is responsible" rather than sovereign states.[3] The relationship between the Crown dependencies and the UK is "one of mutual respect and support, i.e. a partnership".[28]

Until 2001, responsibility for the UK government's relationships with the Crown dependencies rested with the Home Office, but it was then transferred first to the Lord Chancellor's Department, then to the Department for Constitutional Affairs, and finally to the Ministry of Justice. In 2010 the Ministry of Justice stated that relationships with the Crown dependencies are the responsibility of the United Kingdom Government as a whole, with the Ministry of Justice holding responsibility for the constitutional relationship and other ministries engaging with their opposite numbers in the Crown dependencies according to their respective policy areas.[4]

Sir John Chalmers McColl as Lieutenant Governor of Jersey
Sir John Chalmers McColl as Lieutenant Governor of Jersey

The British Government is solely responsible for defence and international representation[2] (although, in accordance with 2007 framework agreements,[29] the UK has elected not to act internationally on behalf of the Crown dependencies without prior consultation). The Crown dependencies are within the Common Travel Area and apply the same visa policy as the United Kingdom, but each Crown dependency has responsibility for its own customs and immigration services.

Acts of the British Parliament do not usually apply to the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, unless explicitly stated. UK legislation does not ordinarily extend to them without their consent.[4] For a UK Act to extend otherwise than by an Order in Council is now very unusual.[2] When deemed advisable, Acts of Parliament may be extended to the Islands by means of an Order in Council (thus giving the UK Government some responsibility for good governance in the islands). An example of this was the Television Act 1954, which was extended to the Channel Islands, so as to create a local ITV franchise, known as Channel Television. By constitutional convention this is only done at the request of the Insular Authorities,[30] and has become a rare option (thus giving the Insular Authorities themselves the responsibility for good governance in the islands), the islands usually preferring nowadays to pass localised versions of laws giving effect to international treaties.

Westminster retains the right to legislate for the Islands against their will as a last resort, but this is also rarely exercised, and may, according to legal opinion from the Attorney-General of Jersey, have fallen into desuetude — although this argument was not accepted by the Department for Constitutional Affairs. (The Marine, Etc., Broadcasting (Offences) Act 1967 was one recent piece of legislation extended to the Isle of Man against the wishes of Tynwald).

The States of Jersey Law 2005 established that all Acts of the United Kingdom and Orders in Council were to be referred to the States, thus giving greater freedom of action to Jersey in international affairs.

Matters reserved to the Crown (i.e. acting through the United Kingdom Government) are limited to defence, citizenship, and diplomatic representation. The islands are not bound by treaties concluded by the United Kingdom (unless they so request) and may separately conclude treaties with foreign governments (except concerning matters reserved to the Crown). The United Kingdom conceded at the end of the 20th century that the islands may establish direct political (non-diplomatic) contacts with foreign governments to avoid British embassies being obliged to pass on communications from the governments that were in conflict with United Kingdom government policy. In recent years, with the development of finance industries and the increasing interdependence of the modern world, the Islands have been more active in international relations, concluding treaties and signing conventions with other states separately from the UK. Such treaties typically concern matters such as tax, finance, environment and trade, and other matters not relating directly to defence and international representation. The UK has in recent years, however, agreed to the Channel Islands negotiating directly with the French government on topics such as French nuclear activities in the region, as this is a matter on which the UK government holds views so at odds with those of the governments of the Bailiwicks that it feels unable to continue to represent the Islands itself.[citation needed]

As in England, but not the United Kingdom as a whole, the Church of England is the Established Church in the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey.[31][32]

In 2007–2008, each Crown Dependency and the UK signed agreements[29][33][34] that established frameworks for the development of the international identity of each Crown Dependency. Among the points clarified in the agreements were that:

  • the UK has no democratic accountability in and for the Crown Dependencies, which are governed by their own democratically elected assemblies;
  • the UK will not act internationally on behalf of the Crown Dependencies without prior consultation;
  • each Crown Dependency has an international identity that is different from that of the UK;
  • the UK supports the principle of each Crown Dependency further developing its international identity;
  • the UK recognises that the interests of each Crown Dependency may differ from those of the UK, and the UK will seek to represent any differing interests when acting in an international capacity; and
  • the UK and each Crown Dependency will work together to resolve or clarify any differences that may arise between their respective interests.

The constitutional and cultural proximity of the Islands to the UK means that there are shared institutions and organisations. The BBC, for example, has local radio stations in the Channel Islands, and also a website run by a team based in the Isle of Man (which is included in BBC North West). While the Islands now assume responsibility for their own post and telecommunications, they continue to participate in the UK telephone numbering plan, and they have adopted postcode systems that are compatible with that of the UK.

The Crown dependencies, together with the United Kingdom, are collectively known as the British Islands. Since the British Nationality Act 1981 came into effect, they have been treated as part of the United Kingdom for British nationality law purposes.[35] However, each Crown dependency maintains local controls over housing and employment, with special rules applying to British citizens without specified connections to that Crown dependency (as well as to non-British citizens).

Relationship with the Commonwealth of Nations

While their constitutional status bears some resemblance to that of the Commonwealth realms, the Crown dependencies are not members of the Commonwealth of Nations. They participate in the Commonwealth of Nations by virtue of their relationship with the United Kingdom, and participate in various Commonwealth institutions in their own right. For example, all three participate in the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and the Commonwealth Games.

All three Crown dependencies regard the existing situation as unsatisfactory and have lobbied for change. The States of Jersey have called on the British Foreign Secretary to request that the Commonwealth Heads of Government "consider granting associate membership to Jersey and the other Crown Dependencies as well as any other territories at a similarly advanced stage of autonomy". Jersey has proposed that it be accorded "self-representation in all Commonwealth meetings; full participation in debates and procedures, with a right to speak where relevant and the opportunity to enter into discussions with those who are full members; and no right to vote in the Ministerial or Heads of Government meetings, which is reserved for full members".[36] The States of Guernsey and the Government of the Isle of Man have made calls of a similar nature for a more integrated relationship with the Commonwealth,[37] including more direct representation and enhanced participation in Commonwealth organisations and meetings, including Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings.[38] The Chief Minister of the Isle of Man has said: "A closer connection with the Commonwealth itself would be a welcome further development of the Island's international relationships"[39]

Relationship with the EU

Certain aspects of membership of the European Union apply to the Crown dependencies, by association of the United Kingdom's membership. For example, Article 355 (5)(c) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) states:

this Treaty shall apply to the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man only to the extent necessary to ensure the implementation of the arrangements for those islands set out in the Treaty concerning the accession of new Member States to the European Economic Community and to the European Atomic Energy Community signed on 22 January 1972.;

and by Protocol 3 to the UK's Act of Accession to the Community:[40]

An Act to make provision in connection with the enlargement of the European Communities to include the United Kingdom, together with (for certain purposes) the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and Gibraltar. [17 October 1972]"

Of the Four Freedoms of the EU, the islands take part in that concerning the movement of goods, but not those concerning the movement of persons, services or capital. The Channel Islands are outside the VAT area (as they have no VAT), while the Isle of Man is inside it.[41] Both areas are inside the customs union.[42]

Channel Islanders and Manx people are British citizens and hence European citizens.[43] However, they are not entitled to take advantage of the freedom of movement of people or services unless they are directly connected (through birth, descent from a parent or grandparent, or five years' residence) with the United Kingdom.[44]

The common agricultural policy of the EU does not apply to the Crown dependencies. Their citizens do not take part in elections to the European Parliament.


With the Brexit negotiations, the House of Lords has produced a report titled "Brexit: the Crown Dependencies", which states that the "UK Government must continue to fulfil its constitutional obligations to represent the interests of the Crown Dependencies in international relations, even where these differ from those of the UK, both during the Brexit negotiations and beyond." [45] In the Great Repeal Bill white paper published on 30 March 2017 the UK government states "The Government is committed to engaging with the Crown Dependencies, Gibraltar and the other Overseas Territories as we leave the EU."[46]:ch.5

See also


  1. ^ "Crown Dependencies – Justice Committee". Parliament of the United Kingdom. 30 March 2010. Retrieved 14 November 2016.
  2. ^ a b c "Background briefing on the Crown dependencies: Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man" (PDF). Ministry of Justice. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Fact sheet on the UK's relationship with the Crown Dependencies" (PDF). Ministry of Justice. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
  4. ^ a b c "Government Response to the Justice Select Committee's report: Crown Dependencies" (PDF). Ministry of Justice. November 2010. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  5. ^ "Profile of Jersey". States of Jersey. Archived from the original on 2 September 2006. Retrieved 31 July 2008. The legislature passes primary legislation, which requires approval by The Queen in Council, and enacts subordinate legislation in many areas without any requirement for Royal Sanction and under powers conferred by primary legislation.
  6. ^ "Review of the Roles of the Crown Officers" (PDF). States of Jersey. 2 July 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 August 2011.
  7. ^ "Written Question To H.M. Attorney General by Deputy P.V.F. Le Claire of St. Helier". States of Jersey. 22 June 2010. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011.
  8. ^ "The Air Navigation (Isle of Man) Order 2007 (No. 1115)". The National Archives. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  9. ^ "The Unregistered Design Rights (Bailiwick of Guernsey) Ordinance". Guernsey Legal Resources. 2005. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011.
  10. ^ a b "Review of the Roles of the Jersey Crown officers" (PDF). States of Jersey. 30 March 2012. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  11. ^ de Woolfson, Joel (21 June 2010). "It's a power thing…". Guernsey Press. Archived from the original on 10 June 2011. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  12. ^ Mollet, Ralph (1954). A Chronology of Jersey. Jersey: Société Jersiaise.
  13. ^ Leach, Robert (2011). "A Quick Guide to Legal Tender" (PDF). p. 3. Retrieved 24 October 2014.
  14. ^ "CIA World Factbook: Guernsey". Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  15. ^ Balleine, G. R.; Syvret, Marguerite; Stevens, Joan (1998). Balleine's History of Jersey (Revised & Enlarged ed.). Chichester: Phillimore & Co. ISBN 1-86077-065-7.
  16. ^ "States of Jersey Law 2005". Jersey Legal Information. 5 May 2006. Archived from the original on 31 October 2007.
  17. ^ "The Council of Ministers". Isle of Man Government. Archived from the original on 29 April 2013. Retrieved 29 January 2013.
  18. ^ "£105,000 – the tax-free reward for being a royal rep". This Is Jersey. 6 July 2010. Archived from the original on 16 August 2011.
  19. ^ Ogier, Thom (3 July 2010). "Guernsey will choose its next Lt-Governor". This Is Guernsey. Archived from the original on 13 August 2011.
  20. ^ "Review of the Roles of the Crown Officers" (PDF). States of Jersey. 29 March 2010. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  21. ^ Southwell, Richard (October 1997). "The Sources of Jersey Law". Jersey Legal Information Board. Archived from the original on 31 March 2012. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  22. ^ "Royal Insight". The official website of the British Monarchy. October 2003. Archived from the original on 15 December 2008. Retrieved 23 July 2008.
  23. ^ "Royal Insight". The official website of the British Monarchy. January 2007. Archived from the original on 15 December 2008. Retrieved 23 July 2008.
  24. ^ Matthews, Paul (June 1999). "Lé Rouai, Nouot' Duc". Jersey Legal Information Board. Archived from the original on 3 October 2011.
  25. ^ Velde, François R. "Royal Styles and Titles in England and Great Britain: Duke of Normandy". Heraldica. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  26. ^ "Review of the Roles of the Crown Officers" (PDF). States of Jersey. 4 May 2010. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  27. ^ "Succession to the Crown (Jersey) Law". Jersey Legal Information Board. 2013. Archived from the original on 14 January 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2013.
  28. ^ "Crown Dependencies – Justice Committee: Memorandum submitted by the Policy Council of the States of Guernsey". Parliament of the United Kingdom. October 2009. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  29. ^ a b "Framework for developing the international identity of Jersey" (PDF). States of Jersey. 1 May 2007. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  30. ^ "UK Legislation and the Crown Dependencies". Department for Constitutional Affairs. Archived from the original on 16 May 2008. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  31. ^ Gell, Sir James. "Memorandum Respecting the Ecclesiastical Courts of the Isle of Man..." Isle of Man Online. Retrieved 7 February 2017.
  32. ^ "About". Guernsey Deanery. Church of England. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  33. ^ "Framework for developing the international identity of Guernsey". States of Guernsey. 18 December 2008. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  34. ^ "Framework for developing the international identity of the Isle of Man" (PDF). Isle of Man Government. 1 May 2007. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  35. ^ "[Withdrawn] Nationality instructions: Volume 2". UK Border Agency. 10 December 2013. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  36. ^ "Foreign Affairs Committee: Written evidence from States of Jersey". Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 18 March 2013.
  37. ^ "Foreign Affairs Committee: The role and future of the Commonwealth". Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 18 March 2013.
  38. ^ "Foreign Affairs Committee: Written evidence from the States of Guernsey". Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 18 March 2013.
  39. ^ "Isle of Man welcomes report on Commonwealth future". Isle of Man Government. 23 November 2012. Archived from the original on 2 March 2013. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
  40. ^ "European Communities Act 1972". The National Archives. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  41. ^ "Article 6 of Council Directive 2006/112/EC of 28 November 2006 (as amended) on the common system of value added tax (OJ L 347)". EUR-Lex. 11 December 2006. p. 1. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  42. ^ "Article 3(1) of Council Regulation 2913/92/EEC of 12 October 1992 establishing the Community Customs Code (as amended) (OJ L 302)". EUR-Lex. 19 October 1992. pp. 1–50. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  43. ^ s 1 of the British Nationality Act 1981 grants citizenship to (most) people born in the 'United Kingdom'. s 50 of the Act defines the 'United Kingdom' to include the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.
  44. ^ Protocol 3 of the Treaty of Accession of the United Kingdom, Ireland and Denmark (OJ L 73, 27 March 1972).
  45. ^ "House of Lords European Union Committee – Brexit: the Crown Dependencies" (PDF). Parliament of the United Kingdom. 23 March 2017. Retrieved 31 July 2017.
  46. ^ "Legislating for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union" (PDF). Department for Exiting the European Union. 30 March 2017. Retrieved 31 July 2017.

External links

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