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Anglesey (Welsh: Ynys Môn), is an island and county off the northwest coast of Wales. It is separated from the mainland by a narrow stretch of water called the Menai Strait. It is connected to the mainland by two bridges, the original Menai Suspension Bridge, built by Thomas Telford in 1826 as a road link, and the newer, twice reconstructed Britannia Bridge, carrying the A55 and the North Wales Coast Railway line.

Historically, Anglesey has long been associated with the Druids. In c. AD 60 the Roman general Suetonius Paullinus, determined to break the power of the druids, attacked the island, destroyed the shrine and the sacred groves. The Romans called the island Mona. Following the Romans, the island was invaded by Vikings, Saxons, and Normans before falling to King Edward I of England, in the 13th century.

Anglesey is fertile and relatively low-lying, and was known as the breadbasket of Wales, referred to during the Middle Ages as Anglesey Mother of Wales (Welsh: Môn Mam Cymru). This gave it substantial strategic importance during the struggles between the English kings and the Welsh princes.

Anglesey has many small towns scattered all around the island, making it quite evenly populated. Beaumaris, to the south of the island, features Beaumaris Castle, built by Edward I as part of his campaign in North Wales. The town is also the site of Llys Rhosyr, the court of the mediaeval Welsh princes, which features one of the oldest courtrooms in the United Kingdom. The town also has a large marina, and acts as a yachting centre for the region. Llangefni is located in the centre of the island and is also the island's administrative centre. The town of Menai Bridge grew up when the first bridge to the mainland was being built, in order to accommodate workers and construction. A short distance from this town lies Bryn Celli Ddu, a Stone Age burial mound. The town of Amlwch is situated no the northwest of the island and is largely industrialised, growing up with the now vacated tin mining industry.

The island also has the village with the longest place name in the United Kingdom, Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch.

The Anglesey Sea Zoo is also a local tourist attraction, providing a look at and descriptions of local marine wildlife from lobsters to conger eels. All the fish and crustaceans on display are caught from around the island and are placed in reconstructions of their home habitat. They also make salt (evaporated from the local sea water) and commercially breed lobsters, for food, and oysters, for pearls, both from local stocks.

The island's entire rural coastline had been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and features many sandy beaches, especially along its northern coast between the towns of Menai Bridge and Amlwch. This leads to the island's principal industry being tourism. Agriculture provides the secondary source of income for the island's economy, with the local dairies being amongst the most productive in the region. There is also a nuclear power station, Wylfa Power Station, at Wylfa Head on the north coast, as well as factories for timber production, aluminium smelting and food processing.

The island is also on one of the major routes from the mainland of Great Britain to Ireland, via ferries from Holyhead, off the west of Anglesey on Holy Island, to Dun Laoghaire.

Administratively, until 1974 Anglesey (together with Holy Island) was one of the thirteen counties of Wales. In 1974 it formed a district of the new large county of Gwynedd, until in the 1996 reform of local government it formed a unitary authority, styled a "county" (rather than a county borough). The unitary authority is now officially named "Isle of Anglesey County Council / Cyngor Sir Ynys Môn"

External Link

Isle of Anglesey County Council\n