England and Wales
Learn more about England and Wales
England and Wales are home nations of the United Kingdom and together share a single legal system. England and Wales is considered a single unit for the conflict of laws. This is because the unit is the constitutional successor to the former Kingdom of England. If considered as a subdivision of the United Kingdom, England & Wales would have a population of 53,390,300 and an area of 151,174 km².
The other countries of the United Kingdom, namely Scotland and Northern Ireland, as well as dependencies such as the Isle of Man and the Bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey, are also separate states (in this strictly legalistic sense; they are not separate states under public international law), each with their own legal system (see the more complete explanation in English law).
As another example, in the sport of cricket, England and Wales field a single representative team in international competition, whereas Scotland is treated as a separate entity. Welsh cricketers may play for the England team , which is administered by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB). Nonetheless, there is a separate Wales team that occasionally participates in limited-overs domestic competition .
Wales was brought under a common monarch with England with the Statute of Rhuddlan in 1284 and annexed to England for legal purposes by the Laws in Wales Acts 1535-1542. However, references in legislation for 'England' were still taken as excluding Wales. The Wales and Berwick Act 1746 meant that in all future laws, 'England' would by default include Wales (and Berwick-upon-Tweed). This was later repealed in 1967 and current laws use "England and Wales" as a single entity. Cardiff was proclaimed as the Welsh capital in 1955. The Government of Wales Act 2006 created new powers for the Welsh Assembly as of May 2007 including the ability to make laws to be called Welsh Assembly Measures. Once these start to be made, and as Westminster responds with more England only laws, the concept of England and Wales as a single legal entity will start to weaken.