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Gibraltar is situated at the southern end of the Iberian Peninsula. It is recognised as the southernmost point of Europe.
There are regular air links with the UK and with Morocco. There is also a ferry link with Tangiers in Morocco. The 1993 statistics showed the size of the population at 28,051. This is mainly located in the centre of the Rock on the western side. On the other side of the rock is a small "village" population in Catalan Bay.
Change of ownership from Spanish to British occurred in 1704 as Admiral Sir George Rooke, together with a British and Dutch force fired 15,000 rounds of shot and shells, and a landing by British marines and sailors, persuaded the city fathers to surrender. On the Rock, the past is a living reality. Colourful ceremonial events like the Changing of the Guard and the Ceremony of the Keys are performed exactly as they have been for centuries.
Constitutionally, Gibraltar is a Dependant Territory with internal self-government. The UK is responsible for defence, foreign affairs, financial stability and internal security. The legal tender in Gibraltar is Gibraltar Government Sterling notes and coinage, although UK sterling is equally welcome. The official language is English although a mixture of English and Spanish is spoken in casual conversation. This local dialect has adopted the term ‘Lanito’. The education system is based on the UK system and all professions are required to have UK qualifications.
Income is derived from tourism, trans-shipment and perhaps most importantly in terms of growth, the provision of financial services.
Out of a population of 30,000, there are already approximately 6,000 people who are active in different sports. There are over 35 sporting associations in Gibraltar using both public and private facilities. The government has been involved in a project to refurbish some old buildings with a view to making them available for use by Gibraltar Sports Associations.
last updated: 22/06/07