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Inverness

Inverness (Scottish Gaelic: Inbhir Nis, pronounced [iɲɪɾʲˈniʃ]) is a city in northern Scotland. The city is the administrative centre for the Highland council area, and is promoted as the capital of the Highlands of Scotland. The city lies near the site of the 18th century Battle of Culloden and at the northeastern extremity of the Great Glen, where the River Ness enters the Inverness/Moray Firth making it a natural hub for various transport links. It is the northernmost city in the United Kingdom. A settlement was established by the 6th century with the first royal charter being granted by King David I in the 12th century.

The population of Inverness increased by over 10% from 1991-2001 and from 1997-2007 with an estimated population in 2006 of 54,000. (This figure of 54,000 is made up of the population of the census administrative area known as Inverness which was estimated at 46,100 plus the estimated 7,900 people living in the immediately adjacent urban settlement of the Culloden census administrative area - an area which covers Westhill, Smithton and Balloch as well as Culloden.) The city is forecast to grow by approximately 40% over the next two decades. Inverness is Europe's fastest growing city and ranked fifth out of 189 British cities for its quality of life, the highest of any Scottish city. Inverness is twinned with one German city, Augsburg and two French towns, La Baule and Saint-Valery-en-Caux.

Inverness College is the main campus for the UHI Millennium Institute and offers one of the widest ranging curricula in Scotland. With around 8,500 students, Inverness College hosts around a quarter of all the University of the Highlands and Islands' students, and 30% of those studying to degree level.

Scottish Gaelic appears on the majority of road signs around Inverness, with a significant number of people speaking the language in the city. The Bòrd na Gàidhlig holds its main office in Inverness, an organisation responsible for supporting and promoting the use of Scottish Gaelic.

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