channel island

Channel Islands History

The Channel Islands became part of the Duchy of Normandy in 933 so in 1066 when the Norman King, William the Conqueror, took over England the Channel Islands were joined into his larger domains. Norman kings lost their mainland French territories in 1204 so the Channel Islands remained their sole French dependencies. Channel Islanders were keen North American colonists and New Jersey was named after the Channel Island of Jersey and Channel Islanders once played important roles in colonization. In World War Two, Britain surrendered the islands without a shot being fired and the locals endured German occupation until the last day of the war. The final months were particularly severe as a British naval blockade prevented the importation of supplies to the German garrison and the famished locals. The Channel Islands have never been a part of the United Kingdom and are divided into the Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey.

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Channel Island

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Jersey and Guernsey are both politically separate, however their long collective history and geographic proximity naturally produce a common identity. The Channel Islands are not part of the UK or the European Union. Jersey and Guernsey are both Crown Dependencies with Queen Elizabeth II their sovereign. A form of Norman French is the official language of both, however in the 19th Century a major language shift resulted in English becoming the primary tongue. The Channel Island's enjoy a robust economy, flourishing on the back of finance, tourism and horticulture; primarily cut flowers and tomatoes sent to the UK.

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