The official website for the States of Guernsey

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The Bailiwick of Guernsey

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The Bailiwick of Guernsey is a group of islands (called Guernsey, Alderney, Sark, Herm, Jethou, Brecqhou and Lihou) within the Channel Islands.

It is a beautiful, vibrant and safe place to live. It has a thriving and modern community driven by a fast-paced economy, but maintains a healthy respect for its culture and traditional values.

Situated in the Bay of St. Malo the Islands are geographically closer to France, only 27 miles from the Normandy coast, and 70 miles from the south coast of England.

The island is approximately 9 miles by 6 miles (just over 78 square kilometres) with a population of over 60,000. The capital, St Peter Port, is unique with its cobbled streets and a mixture of small boutiques and other mainstream shopping and banking areas. In addition there are many restaurants, bistros and cafes offering a wide range of cuisine with many featuring fresh local seafood.

Guernsey offers a completely different way of life. The island has stunning views, beautiful walks and cycle routes. Sport is an important part of life in Guernsey, as well as the arts. If you wish to participate in some voluntary work we have many charities that would welcome your support.

Limited space together with the many positive reasons to live here, mean that there are certain requirements you need to meet if you would like to move to Guernsey.

Although Guernsey is geographically closer to the Normandy coast than the south coast of England, it is a dependency of the British Crown. The Queen is the Head of State (as the latter day successor to the Duke of Normandy) and the Lieutenant-Governor is Her Majesty's personal representative.

Part of the Duchy of Normandy from before the Norman Conquest of England, the Channel Islands were retained by the Kings of England when Normandy was lost in 1204. Guernsey and Jersey have remained as two separate crown dependencies, each with their own laws and customs based originally on Norman practice. Effectively independent, yet coming under the protective wing of the British Government, Guernsey is a part of the British Isles but not the United Kingdom. The UK Government is responsible only for the Bailiwick's international representation and defence.

The Bailiwick is not represented in the UK Parliament. UK legislation rarely extends to the Crown Dependencies and should not be extended without first consulting the Islands' authorities and obtaining their consent. In instances where a UK Act of Parliament does extend, it may do so either by virtue of the Act itself or by 'Order in Council' made by the Privy Council. The UK Government is responsible for the Bailiwick's formal international representation.

Special terms were negotiated for the Channel Islands on the UK's accession to the European Union in 1973. These are contained in Protocol 3 to the UK Treaty of Accession. The effect of the protocol is, amongst other things, that the Bailiwick is within the Common Customs Area and the Common External Tariff (i.e. it enjoys access to EU countries of physical exports without tariff barriers). Other Community rules do not apply to the Bailiwick.






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