The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (usually shortened to the United Kingdom or the UK) is the nation containing England, Scotland, Wales, and the northern six counties of Ireland (Northern Ireland). It is a constitutional monarchy. Its population is about 60 million inhabitants. It has no official language, but the de facto official language is English.
Frequently, but incorrectly, people use "British", or even "English" as the adjective referring to anything from the UK.
Spanking in the UK
Smacking is the common word for spanking in the UK when refering to the punishment of children. In fact, spanking is very uncommon is use outside of the spanking scene and refers almost exclusively to consensual or erotic punishments between adults in the modern language; almost no parents would use that word to refer to the punishment of children.
Laws prohibiting the Corporal Punishment of children are different throughout the Union.
Scotland has outlawed the striking of children and declared that regardless of age or family association - children have the same legal protection against assault as adults.
The legal system of England and Wales have instead passed the Reasonable Chastisement act which allows striking on the forearms and upper leg, but not on the buttocks and does not permit parents to inflict bruising.
See Also: England: The home.
Spanking implements in domestic use that were popular in the UK include the birch, the cane, the strap, and the slipper. Implement use differed depending on many factors - including class. For example: In the late 19th century, Slippers were in common use amongst the lower-classes of Scotland and the upper classes of English schooling.
A misconception is to believe that the tawse was frequently used in the home. In fact, sale of the tawse was restricted by manufacturers to teachers only, and although some small numbers may have entered domestic use, it was not common.
In 1986, school spanking was made illegal in UK state schools. In 1998, this was extended to all UK schools but the pracise of Corporal Punishment had stopped several years before then.
It has been said by many, that the only good and democratic decision made by much despised former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher was to allow a 'free vote' in parliment on the outlawing of Corporal Punishment in British schools without party interference, voting with their conscience the law was carried easily even if public schools retained a minor excemption for years after.
At present, heavy criticism is heaped upon the former use of corporal punishment in schools, teachers made no allowances for mental health or medical problems such as dyslexia and many contemporary adults feel they were repeatedly punished unfairly.
- For English Public schools, please see the main article: England: Schools
State schools in England were rife with the use of straps and frequently, the cane. There was no universal convention across England and there could be a great dispairity even on schools within the same district. Some schools permitted punishment in the classroom to be administered by the teacher, others only permitted the head-teacher to administer punishments. In some schools, for less-serious crimes the seat of the trousers was beaten with the slipper.
Historically, state schools in Scotland used the birch as a prime implement, switching state-wide in the 19th century to the Tawse which could be administered by teachers in the classroom - however the Tawse was only used on the student's palms rather than on their buttocks and it remained this way until 1987. Some Scottish Public schools retained the use of the cane, but it was considered uncommon.
The Law and Judicial Use
Police and other law enforcement were known to use corporal punishment on youths until the early 20th century. Although it was often ordered by courts there were some cases where punishments of youths and minors caught 'red handed' was not authorised either by the judiciary or by parents, but as spanking and such punishments from authority figures was ingraned into the national psyche there were few complaints.
One Scottish Policemen was famous for patenting a method brine-soaking birch rods.
The practise of Judicial Corporal Punishment was abolished in 1948.
UK spanking art
UK spanking magazines
- More information on this topic is available at [ Wikipedia:United Kingdom ]