Belfast & Northern Ireland

NI Facts & Figures


Population: 1.81 million (2011 Census)
Area: 13,843 km2 c.175km wide and 135km high.
Border: 360km (with the Republic of Ireland)

Counties (in order of population): Antrim, Down, Londonderry, Tyrone, Armagh, Fermanagh. Northern Ireland's six counties fall within the ancient Irish Province of Ulster which also includes neighbouring RoI Counties Cavan, Monaghan and Donegal.

Councils: 11

Capital city: Belfast (pop. 267,500)

Other cities (in order of population): Derry (83,652), Lisburn (71,465), Newry (27,430), Armagh (14,590)

Largest town: Bangor (2001 pop. 76,403)

Inhabited Islands: Rathlin (2001 pop. 75)

Highest point: Slieve Donard, Mourne Mountains (852m - pic)

Largest lake (landlocked): Lough Neagh (392 km² - also largest in the British Isles)

Largest inlet: Strangford Lough (150 km² - also largest in the British Isles)

Longest river: River Bann (129km)

Government: Part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (also comprising England, Scotland and Wales). Prime Minister David Cameron (Conservative). Secretary of Sate Theresa Villiers MP (head of the Northern Ireland Office). There are 18 NI MPs. Due to their opposition of NI's inclusion in the UK (and Parliament's oath of allegiance to the Queen), Sinn Fein's four MPs do not take their seats at Westminster.

Northern Ireland Assembly: (devolved power-sharing government with specific powers including health, education, environment and local economy). 108 Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs). First Minister Peter Robinson MLA MP (Democratic Unionist Party). Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness MP (Sinn Fein).

Political Parties (top six in order of Assembly's public vote): Democratic Unionist Party (Unionist), Sinn Fein (Nationalist), Ulster Unionist (Unionist), Social Democratic and Labour Party (Nationalist), Alliance, Traditional Unionist Voice (Unionist).

Currency: £Sterling

Languages: English (predominant), Irish Gaelic, Ulster-Scots (dialect variant of the English language originating in Scotland).

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