U.K. Fun Facts

(Well, fun facts for this American crew who are new to this beautiful land)

England flag.jpg
  • The UK is smaller than the U.S. state of Oregon
  • The UK has almost 3 times the population of Australia
  • There are more chickens than humans in the UK (not sure where they are hiding…I’ve only seen about 10
  • There is only a 34 kilometre (21 mile) gap between England and France
  • Nowhere is more than 75 miles from the sea (for my beloved American buddies that, sadly, does NOT mean that you are never more than an hour and fifteen minutes from the sea - The quaint, narrow lanes lined with hedgerows are great for a beautiful scenic drive…but not for expeditious travel)
  • In the UK, accents change noticeably about every 25 miles (40km)
  • My personal favorite…The British Navy uses Britney Spears' songs to scare off Somali pirates (I would love to meet the person who first imagined this would be effective - Nothing against Britney Spears…or her songs…but I’m totally intrigued by the creativity)
  • Klingon was the chosen language for the Welsh government in its response to queries about UFO sightings at Cardiff Airport (totally not kidding - Hahaha!) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-33479808
  • In the U.K., it is legal for kids over 5 years old to drink alcohol at home or on other private premises
  • Nigeria has more English speakers than the United Kingdom
  • The emergency number is 999…instead of 911, which is used in America
  • Mother’s Day is celebrated on different days in the US and the UK
  • There are no electrical sockets in the bathrooms (not so grand for a girl who needs a hairdryer like a fish needs water)
  • Light switches are reversed to that of the US (up is off, down is on)
  • Watching or recording television on any device is not allowed unless you’ve paid the annual TV license fee (which is in addition to a cable fee if you choose to have it)
  • A council tax is paid monthly which covers things such as planning, transport, highways, police, fire, libraries, leisure and recreation, rubbish collection and disposal
  • Water bills are paid once every six months
  • They have a unique way of combatting obesity on this little island - Everything is tiny…from the refrigerators and cars to the parking spaces and showers (If your tummy needs to be tamed, car parks and showers may not be your favorite places)
  • Bathroom stalls (compared to its US counterparts) are awesome (The walls typically reach from the ceiling to floor and there are no gaping cracks in the stall doors)
  • What American’s think of as private schools are referred to as public schools here, and what American’s call public schools are considered private
  • Instead of elementary, middle and high schools, England has primary and secondary schools (A kiddo in the 5th grade in the United States would be in year 6 in England with Year 1 in England being comparable to kindergarten in the US)
  • The floor at street level is considered the ground floor, where the floor above it is considered the 1st floor