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Ten Strange British Foods

Ten Strange British Foods

  • Posted: Sep 16, 2015
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Every country has foods that seem strange to outsiders. For example, South Africans eat raw dried beef called biltong which is both very tasty and considered a convenient snack. The Chinese eat bird nest soup actually made from the nests of the White-nest Swiftlet (Aerodramus Fuciphagus). In Cambodia a tarantula is considered quite acceptable for dinner and a Mopane Worm (caterpillar) stew is not uncommon in Botswana. The British have their own collection of unusual foods that other nationalities find disturbing although sometimes it’s just in the name.

1. Spotted Dick

Strange Foods - Spotted DickThis is one of Britain’s best known and most humorous foods if you get the joke. For those who don’t already know “Dick” is British slang for a man’s reproductive organ and a spotted reproductive organ is never good. Quite recently, and in a spasm of uncontrollable political correctness, several hospitals in Britain renamed this pudding “spotted Richard”. (Dick also being the abbreviated form of the name Richard) It didn’t catch on and common sense prevailed and the name was changed back again. Thanks to this patients can now grin and ask their nurses whether there’s any chance that they could have a spotted dick. In reality this is simply a suet pudding into which raisins and other dried fruits are mixed before cooking. Naturally, these are the spots. Where the ‘Dick’ part of the name came from is still a mystery although some claim it is a derivation of the word “dough” meaning dog or the German word “dicht” meaning thick.
Actually … this is a delicious pudding that is usually served with custard, another great British invention made from eggs, sugar and cream and known as Creme Anglais in France.

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First Ten Olympic Movies London 2012

First Ten Olympic Movies London 2012

  • Posted: Sep 16, 2015
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Film was truly in its infancy in 1896 when the first of the Modern Olympics took place in Athens but 29 years and 8 Olympic Games would pass by before the first ‘entertainment’ film would be made that featured this remarkable sporting event. This is the list of the First Ten ‘movies’ that featured the Olympic Games as part of their storyline.

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Top Ten Stone Circles UK

Top Ten Stone Circles UK

  • Posted: Sep 16, 2015
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Britain has some of the best stone circles and Neolithic sites in the UK. They’ve inspired the imagination of historians, archaeologists and even poets. These prehistoric sites represent the very first civilisations in the UK and Europe and are still the subject of debate and mystery. Archaeologists tend to agree that they were used for religious rituals and even burials but … they aren’t certain that this was there main purpose. They’ve been linked to ancient druids, ghosts, crop circles and even alien visitations. Examples such as Stonehenge would have required the efforts of hundreds if not thousands of people so there is no doubt they were of extraordinary importance. This is our list of the top ten stone circles in the UK.

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West Wycombe Estate Follies

West Wycombe Estate Follies

  • Posted: Sep 16, 2015
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The West Wycombe Estate was originally purchased in 1698 by two brothers, Sir Francis Dashwood, 1st Baronet and Sir Samuel Dashwood (later Lord Mayor of London) from their brother-in-law Thomas Lewis an Alderman of London. After the business relationship between the two brothers ceased in 1704, Sir Francis Dashwood bought out his brother’s share in the property.The pre-existing buildings were demolished and a modest house in the late Carolean style was erected in its place. It is generally accepted that Sir Francis Dashwood was passionate about many subjects but several dominated both his aspirations and his activities. He was also deeply impressed by classical Greek, Roman and Middle Eastern ideas and architecture.

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Top Ten Red British Icons

Top Ten Red British Icons

  • Posted: Sep 16, 2015
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There are ten British icons that have become the top global symbols of this country. Some are recent while some have their origins way back in history. They all remind us, residents and tourists alike, that Britain is unique place that has been the melting pot for many cultures over thousands of years. A place where tradition is cherished, innovation is admired and eccentricity is accepted. Here are the top ten british icons with a twist. They’re all bright red!


The Original Mini Motor Car

British Icon - The Red Mini CarTop of the Top Ten British Icons, uniquely British, the Mini was the brainchild of Sir Alec Issigonis a designer for the British Motor Corporation and was first produced in 1959. It was the British answer to the Volkswagen Beetle and became an instant icon of the 1960’s. Small but deceptively spacious it was easy to park, cheap to run and very ‘cool’ to drive. It was seen as eco friendly long before the green movement had even put down roots. In 1969 it was the real star of the cult classic film The Italian Job. Since then it has featured in many other motion pictures and become a firm favourite with celebrities from Mick Jagger to Mr. Bean. It has even had its own international exhibition and been featured on postage stamps. More than 1.5 million were produced. In 1996 the Mini was voted car of the century and in 1999 it was voted the second most influential car in the history of motoring. A Top Ten Icon of Britain.
Broadway Tower History

Broadway Tower History

  • Posted: Sep 16, 2015
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Rising majestically from the edge of Fish Hill is Broadway Tower, an icon of the Cotswolds region of England. Built around 1799 at the instruction of the Earl of Coventry it became an instant landmark and has been featured in sketches, paintings, postcards and posters ever since. If there was an official list of the most photogenic buildings in England then Broadway Tower would definitely be in the top ten.

ICON OF ENGLAND (1799 – 2011)

Possibly it’s the colour of the stone against a blue sky, maybe it’s the wonderful angles from which it can be viewed or perhaps it’s the architecture of the building itself but it’s almost impossible to take a bad photograph of Broadway Tower. Maybe this shouldn’t be surprising as it was built as a folly and designed to look good from the start. In a age when people largely had to make their own entertainment, wealthy landowners often spent vast amounts of money converting their gardens and estates into the 18th century equivalents of theme parks. Towers, statues, manmade caves, mazes, waterfalls, grottos and copies of buildings ranging from Roman temples to ruined gothic castles were positioned within carefully contrived landscapes to create a sense visual romance for their owners and for the entertainment of their guests.

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British Explorers – The Top Twenty

British Explorers – The Top Twenty

  • Posted: Sep 15, 2015
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When it comes to explorers, Britain really is great. Over the centuries adventurers from Britain have explored almost every corner of the Globe and brought back news of their discoveries. Some are well known while other have slipped into undeserving obscurity. This is our list of the Top Twenty British Explorers and their achievements. The ranking system used was based on four factors: Achievements, Difficulty, Persistence and Public Recognition. Also … this list is also only about people who were first and foremost World explorers. As such, archaeologists such as Howard Carter and naturalists such as Charles Darwin are not included in this list.

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British Explorers – The Top Ten

British Explorers – The Top Ten

  • Posted: Sep 15, 2015
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Continuing on from the ‘Top Twenty British Explorers’, here are the ones that have made it into the Top Ten. The investigation of the World by British explorers contributed significantly to the development of modern society as we know it today. Explorers were expected to discover new lands, break records and map the world for future travellers. It was a dangerous but exhilarating opportunity for adventurers, whatever their social class, to advance scientific knowledge, acquire new mineral and agricultural resources and to make their own fortunes. Still, even those that succeeded often paid for their bravery with their lives. Of the top twenty British explorers, in this and the previous list, only three – just 15% – survived to old age.

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Windmills in England

Windmills in England

  • Posted: Sep 15, 2015
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England is rightly famous for its wide range of beautiful windmills some of which are nearly 400 years old. For centuries these extraordinary buildings were the mainstay of the farming industry and responsible for providing flour for the cities and countryside alike. Largely replaced by modern industrial mills those windmills that remain have become homes, film sets, the inspiration for modern weapons and even places of mystery. Some still produce flour and remind us of a time when life was lived closer to home and community was everything. Here is our collection of remarkable windmills in England for you to enjoy. Some are recent while some have their origins way back in history.

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Hawkstone Park History

Hawkstone Park History

  • Posted: Sep 15, 2015
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With its mysterious legends and unusual follies, Hawkstone Park is one of Britain’s most fascinating destinations but its story really begins almost 800 years ago. In 1227 Henry de Audley, Sheriff of Shropshire and Staffordshire, built a sandstone castle on a natural outcrop of rock that was flanked on all sides by wide valleys. De Audley himself was Lord of the Welsh Marches and constable of Bridgnorth and Shrewsbury. It was a clever an unusual construction which used two of the crags to create separate fortifications which were then linked over the access path. This meant that the castle would be extremely difficult for an enemy to seize.

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