A–Z of British life

    Spotlight 9/2017
    A-Z of British life
    © Fishbones/iStock.com
    Von Vanessa Clark



    Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty are the UK’s finest landscapes, protected from developmentErschließung, Bebauungdevelopment for the benefitNutzenbenefit of the nation. The schemeProjekt, Programmscheme was started in 1945. Today, AONBs include farmland and cover nearly one fifth of the area of the country.



    Blue plaques
    A blue plaqueGedenktafelplaque shows where someone significant used to live or work. Nominations for new plaques come from the public, and ten are added each year. to check outanschauenCheck out the free app for the stories behind the plaques.



    What’s been Cornwall’s greatest contribution to British culture in recent years — clotted cream (UK)dicke Sahne, Streichsahneclotted cream, Cornishaus CornwallCornish pasty (UK)Pastete hier: pikante Teigtaschepasties, Cornish Yarg cheese? No, it’s the BBC TV drama series Poldark. ruggedschroff, zerklüftet, wildRugged coastlines and rugged actor Aiden Turner have made this a big Sunday night hit.

    Watch the trailer for the BBC TV drama series Poldark.




    Doctor Who
    The BBC sci-fi TV series has enjoyed cult status among its fans (“Whovians”) since it started in 1963. The Doctor can “regenerate” (allowing new actors to play the role), and this year, Jodie Whittaker is taking over as the first-ever female Doctor.



    Equal marriage
    This became legal in England, Wales and Scotland in 2014, putting same-sex couples to put on an equal footinggleichstellenon an equal footing with opposite-sex couples. Gay-rights protesters in Northern Ireland are hoping for the same right soon.



    First-past-the-post voting
    In Britain, this system of voting ensures that the candidate who has the most votes in each constituencyWahlkreis, Wahlbezirkconstituency wins, and all other votes are lost. The system favours the big parties and encourages people to vote tactically.  



    With more than 1,600 branchFilialebranches Greggs is the largest bakery chain in the UK. It is famous for its cheap savourypikant, schmackhaftsavoury snacks, especially its sausage roll (UK)Blätterteig mit Wurstfüllungsausage rolls and pasties. Greggs sells two million sausage rolls every week.



    Headley Court
    When members of the British armed forces are seriously injured, they come for rehabilitation to Headley Court in Surrey. Specialist medical teams help to rebuild the bodies and lives of the wounded soldiers.



    The i360 observation tower in Brighton gives visitors 360-degree views from its futuristic glass podKabinepod, which travels up and down the 162-metre-high tower. Designed by the same team as the London Eye, it cost £46 million to build.



    “And did those feet in ancient time, walk upon England’s mountains green?” So starts the hymn “Jerusalem”, which imagines Jesus coming to England to found a new Jerusalem. It is said to be the unofficial English anthemHymneanthem.

    Watch and listen to “Jerusalem” at the Royal Albert Hall in London.




    “Knock, knock” jokes
    — “Knock, knock!”
    — “Who’s there?”
    — “Nana.”
    — “Nana who?”
    — “nana your business (ifml.)(klingt wie : none of your business) das geht dich einen Dreck anNana your business!”
    This is a classic “knock, knock” joke. Other callers at the door are “Police” (“Police open the door”), “Mikey” (“Mikey doesn’t fit in the keyhole”) and “Ivor” (“Ivor sore hand from knocking”).



    If you haven’t got at least one Lakeland product in your kitchen, you aren’t British. The company’s 69 stores sell everything from 3D dinosaur cookie cutterAusstechercutters to 12 different types of floor mopBodenwischerfloor mop. Its flagshipVorzeige-flagship store is at the company’s headquarters in the Lake District.



    Mo Farah
    Sir Mo is the UK’s finest-ever distance runnerLang-, Mittelstreckenläufer(in)distance runner. He won Olympic gold medals over 5,000 and 10,000 metres in 2012 and 2016, celebrating with his famous “mobot” pose. Born in Somalia, he moved to London at the age of eight.



    The top five names for new baby girls are Amelia, Olivia, Emily, Isla and Eva. For boys, the top names are Oliver, Jack, Harry, George and Jacob. Reflecting London’s multiculturalism, the top name in the capital is Muhammad.



    The 2012 London Olympics styled itself as the “legacy games”, promising to bring increased sporting activity to the whole nation. Sadly, Brits enjoyed the Olympic Games on TV, but they weren’t inspired to get up and turn to sport.



    Private Eye
    Sales of the satirical magazine Private Eye have increased in the Brexit / Trump era to a 30-year high. Editor Ian Hislop says, “Thirty years ago, we had a Conservative female prime minister, the Labour party was in a mess and we had a TV star who ended up as the US president. How times have changed.”



    Quality Street
    Christmas wouldn’t be complete without a tin of Quality Street, an assortmentSortiment, Mischungassortment of brightly wrappedeingepacktwrapped chocolates and toffeeSahnebonbon, Karamellbonbontoffees. Last Christmas, a poll to revealenthüllen, offenbarenrevealed that the purple one (hazelnut and caramel) is the UK’s favourite Quality Street sweet.



    Round pound
    It’s time to say goodbye to the round pound. From 15 October, after being in circulationUmlaufcirculation for 33 years, the old pound coin will no longer be accepted in shops. The new 12-sided, bimetal version is harder to to counterfeitfälschencounterfeit.



    Self-conscious behaviour
    self-consciousverlegen, befangenSelf-conscious behaviour is the combination of not really wanting to be noticed, being overly polite and feeling embarrassedpeinlich berührtembarrassed all at the same time. Just watch John Cleese in Fawlty Towers. Americans understand this behaviour.



    Every girl knows Topshop. It has 320 branches in the UK as well as its flagship London store at Oxford Circus. It was one of the first UK high-street fashionDurchschnittsmodehigh-street fashion stores to work with high-fashion brandMarkebrands and celebrity names, such as Kate Moss and Beyoncé, on designer collections.



    Only 45 per cent of the London Underground network actually runs underground in tunnels. These are mostly in the centre of the city. The rest of the network is overground. Transport for London provides a special map for people who suffer from claustrophobia, to help them avoid the longest tunnels.



    Village names
    Great Snoring, Crackpot, Lost, Pity Me, New Invention, Queen Camel, Bitchfield, Wetwang, North Piddle, Droop, Throop and Barton in the Beans: it would be worth moving to one of these villages just to have such an awesome (ifml.)fantastisch, tollawesome address.



    Wolf Hall
    The Observer called this book one of the “10 best historical novels”. Wolf Hall (2009) by Hilary Mantel is another example of Britain’s love affair with all things Tudor. It is a fictional telling of the life of Thomas Cromwell, who was chief minister to King Henry VIII.



    X run
    X run, Tough Mudder, Rough Runner, Wild Run and Wolf Run are “mud-running” events with obstacleHindernisobstacles such as water — and lots and lots of mud. They’ve become very popular in the past few years in the UK, as in the rest of Europe and the US.



    Yorkshire pudding
    Even if the traditional Sunday roast lunch is no longer as popular as it once was, a home-made Yorkshire pudding is still one of the finest aspects of British cooking. Put eggs, flour and milk or water in a well-greasedgeschmiert, gefettetgreased pan in a hot oven — mmm! And don’t forget the gravy(Braten)Soßegravy.



    Zoella (real name Zoe Sugg) is the UK’s most influential social-media star. The 27-year-old fashion and beauty vlogger has 11.8 million subscriberAbonnentsubscribers on YouTube and 9.2 million Twitter followers. Her message to teenage girls is: “Be the best version of YOU!”


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