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The Lynton and Lynmouth cliff railway connects the twin villages of Lynton and Lynmouth. Lynton was built on flat land 600 feet above the fishing village of Lynmouth. Until the cliff railway was built the only way to get between the two villages was a very steep road.
In 1890 the cliff railway designed by George Marks opened enabling tourists who were landing in Lynmouth to easily get to Lynton. Originally it had been proposed that the railway could be powered by a stationary steam engine but by the time it was built it was powered by a far more ingenious and environmentally green method.
The method of power that moves the two carrages up and down the 862 foot long track is water. While the cliff railway itself isn't unique the fact that it is entirly powered by water is. The principal of moving the two carrages up and down the tracks is a simple one, it's all a matter of balance. The two carrages are connected by a cable and when one is up the other is down. All that is finally needed is to make the upper carrage heaver so that it goes down pulling the other carrage up. This is done with water.
Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights. In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states. Text by Steve Smith.