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Tower Bridge London.

English & the UK: London

English & the UK: London

In this week's Premier Skills English Podcast, Jack and Rich start a new mini-series of podcasts called 'English & the UK'. For the next four podcasts, they will focus on four Premier League cities. They will tell you more about what you can find in these cities and focus on some of the language you will need when visiting places in these cities. The city they are visiting in this episode is London and the language focus is on the language of recommendation and advice. Find out some of the best things to do and see in the UK's capital. Your task is to recommend three things to do or see in London. Don't forget to listen to the end of the podcast because we have a new football phrase for you to guess, too. Enjoy!

Transcript

If the listening was a bit difficult, you can listen again and read the transcript at the same time.
Read the transcript and listen at the same time.

Welcome - English & the UK - London 

Jack: Hello my name’s Jack

Rich: and I’m Rich and welcome to this week’s Premier Skills English podcast

Jack: Where we talk about football and help you with your English.

Rich: We recommend that you listen to this podcast on the Premier Skills English website because that is where we have the transcript, language examples, activities, quizzes and a discussion page to help you understand everything we talk about.

Jack: However, if you’re listening on Spotify or Apple Podcasts, you can leave answers to our questions in the review section. We do read all the reviews and would love to hear from you. 

Rich: In this week’s podcast, we’re starting a new mini-series of podcasts that focus on English and the UK. In these podcasts, you will learn more about cities in the UK and at the same time lots of useful English words and phrases.

Jack: In each podcast, we will focus on one UK city. In this episode, we are going to talk about the UK capital - London. 

Rich: You will hear a roleplay in the podcast which will be a conversation between a Londoner - someone from London and a visitor to the city.

Jack: They will be talking about things to do in the city and the sights to see.

Rich: You will hear the roleplay in two parts, after each part we will focus on the language you heard. In this episode, we’ll be looking at the language you need to give recommendations.

Jack: Rich will be asking me for some recommendations about what to do and see in London. The language we use will be useful to recommend things to do and see in your city, other places and your everyday life.

Rich: With the language we introduce you will be able to recommend places to go, food to try, films to see … anything really. 

Jack: All the cities we focus on in this series are home to Premier League teams so listen out for the football connections in the podcast.

Rich: One of those connections is our football phrase section so don’t forget to listen to the end of the podcast because that’s when we ask you to guess our weekly football phrase.

Football Phrase 1 

Jack: But, before we look at all that, let’s look at last week’s football phrase. If you didn’t hear it last week we’ll give you one more chance to guess and give you the correct answer at the end of the show when we give you a new football phrase.

Rich: It was one of your phrases Jack so it was really easy!

Jack: I don’t think it was that easy. Only Elghoul from Algeria and Liubomyr from Ukraine got it right.

Rich: I’m sure lots of people got it right they just didn’t write it on the Premier Skills English website. Let’s hear it again and listeners can decide if it was easy or not. 

Jack: OK, here we go. The football phrase last week was new signing. At this time of year, many clubs are looking for different players or new signings that will make a difference to their squads for next season.

Rich: So easy! We’ll tell you the answer to Jack’s super easy football phrase at the end of the show and I’m going to think of a really difficult football phrase for you to guess this week.

Jack: And if you can guess Rich’s super difficult football phrase and write it in the comments section on the Premier Skills English website, we will announce your name in next week’s show. 

Introduction to Roleplay

Jack: You are now going to listen to part one of the roleplay. 

Rich: You will hear Jack, the Londoner, talking to me, the visitor. We are talking about things to see and do in London.

Jack: After the roleplay, we will ask you to think about the conversation and we’ll talk about the language we use.

Rich: While you listen, we want you to answer a question. The question for this part of the roleplay is: 

Jack: What activity do I recommend that won’t cost Rich anything?

Roleplay: Part 1

Jack: So, you’re visiting London next week. Lucky you! I haven’t been back for months. It’s going to be your first time, isn’t it?

Rich: Yep, I can’t wait. It’s going to be brilliant. You know, I know I’ve got to go and see Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace and all that but I was hoping you might give me a few more ideas of what to do and what to see while I’m there.

Jack: Some recommendations. Sure. If I were you, I’d try to see all those things you’re talking about in the mornings before the crowds get too much. 

Rich: Sounds like a good plan.

Jack: Or even better … it’s probably a good idea to go on a Monday or Tuesday and definitely avoid the weekend because it will be rammed.

Rich: I’ll be at the match on Saturday anyway.

Jack: Oh yeah, Wembley Stadium will be amazing for the match but you must do the tour earlier in the day - it’s brilliant.

Rich: Is it worth it?

Jack: Yeah, it’s great, you can go up to the Royal Box and pretend to lift a trophy and go to the dressing rooms, press box everywhere. There’s a museum too.

Rich: Sounds good.

Jack: In fact, while you’re in London, I’d suggest going to a few other Premier League stadiums - there are five in London. As an Arsenal fan, the Emirates Stadium is a must-see.

Rich: And I’ve heard Tottenham’s new Stadium is worth seeing.

Jack: I suppose so. They say it’s state-of-the-art but it’s not my cup of tea. Haha!

...

Rich: OK, what else should I do?

Jack: Have you thought of going to Borough Market?

Rich:  Never heard of it. Where’s that?

Jack: It’s just south of the river. Next to London Bridge. It’s the oldest market in London and you’ll find food and drink from all over the world. I’d highly recommend it.

Rich: What else? I’d like to see as much as I can.

Jack: It’d take weeks to see everything so it’s quicker to get a view. You could go to the London Eye, but the queues are massive and it’s a bit pricey.

Rich: So you wouldn’t recommend it. 

Jack: Go for it if you want but you might like to go to the Shard, it has a much better view.

Rich: The shard?

Jack: Yeah, it’s a super tall skyscraper. It’s 95 stories high and you can go up and see all of London from the top. They say you can see for forty miles.

Rich: Sounds brilliant.

Jack: But if you want something for free I’d take a picnic to Greenwich Park in South London. It’s quieter than other parks in London and has stunning views of the city.

Language Focus 1

Rich: Did you get the answer to the question? What does Jack recommend that won’t cost anything?

Jack: It was the picnic in Greenwich Park. Well, I suppose you’d have to pay for the food.

Rich:  Let’s have a look at some of the language we used in the roleplay. 

Jack: We’re going to focus on words and phrases we use to recommend things to people.

Rich: In the roleplay, I was asking Jack for advice about London and he was giving me some recommendations or suggestions of what to do and see.

Jack: Let’s look at a few of those phrases. When we were talking about Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and the traditional things in London I said,  ‘If I were you, I’d try to see all these things in the mornings before the crowds get too much.’

Rich: This phrase, ‘if I were you’ followed by ‘I would’ plus the infinitive is a very common way to give a recommendation or advice to someone.

Jack: The phrase is used to say what you would do if you were in the same situation as the other person. 

Rich: We say ‘I were’ not ‘I was’. It’s important to remember that this phrase is for hypothetical or unreal situations.

Jack: Some examples might be: ‘If I were you, I’d try to go in the morning’, ‘If I were you, I’d take a tour of Wembley’, ‘If I were you, I’d visit the Shard’.

Rich: This wasn’t the only way Jack gave recommendations. Listen to these three examples from the roleplay. Which small grammar word do they all use? 

Jack: ONE: In fact, while you’re in London, I’d suggest going to a few other Premier League stadiums.

Jack: TWO: It’s the oldest market in London and you’ll find food and drink from all over the world. I’d highly recommend it.

Jack: THREE: But if you want something for free I’d take a picnic to Greenwich Park in South London.

Rich: All three examples use the word ‘would’. We often use ‘would’ to be less direct when giving recommendations or advice. 

Jack: ‘Would’ is common with verbs such as advise, imagine, recommend, say, and suggest.

Rich: ‘Would’ is usually contracted - it’s short. You don’t hear ‘I would’ you hear ‘I’d’. Let’s listen to those three example sentences again. Can you hear ‘would’ in each sentence?

Jack: ONE: In fact, while you’re in London, I’d suggest going to a few other Premier League stadiums.

Jack: TWO: It’s the oldest market in London and you’ll find food and drink from all over the world. I’d highly recommend it.

Jack: THREE: But if you want something for free I’d take a picnic to Greenwich Park in South London.

...

Rich: When we make recommendations we often use modal verbs such as must, might and could.

Jack: Must is the strongest of these three. In the roleplay, I said ’you must do the tour at Wembley Stadium’.

Rich: In this sentence, must is being used as a recommendation - Jack’s saying how good the tour is. He’s not using must as an obligation - to force me to do the tour.

Jack: ‘Could’ is often used to give more possibilities or recommendations for example ‘You could see mummies at the British Museum or Van Gogh paintings at the National Gallery’.

Rich: ‘Could’ is also used to introduce a possibility when you don’t recommend something like when Jack said ‘You could go on the London Eye but the queues are massive and it’s a bit pricey’.

Jack: ‘Might’ is often used with ‘like’ for recommendations. I said to Rich in the roleplay ‘You might like to go to the shard’. Again this isn’t as strong as ‘must’ and is like saying something is a possible option rather than a strong recommendation.

...

Rich: We’ve got one more part of the roleplay for you to listen to and again we want you to answer a question while you are listening.

Jack: The question is: Which museum do I recommend?

Roleplay Part 2

Rich: London sounds a bit pricey. Is there anything else that’s free?

Jack: I forgot that you were a bit of a cheapskate. Why don’t you go to a museum or a gallery? It’s amazing but you can go to some of the best galleries and museums in the world in London and they are all free.

Rich: Really? Free?

Jack: Yes, have you thought about the British Museum? You could go and see some Egyptian mummies. What about some Van Gogh and Da Vinci masterpieces at the National Gallery?, or the dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum they are worth seeing.

Rich: And which would you recommend?

Jack: The science museum is an absolute must see. It has to be the best museum in London.

Language Focus 2

Jack: Did you get the answer to the question? Which museum did I recommend? I actually recommended the British Museum, the National Gallery and the Natural History Museum but I especially recommended the Science museum.

Rich: There are some other words and phrases we use to give recommendations. Listen to these examples from the second part of the roleplay and some examples from earlier, too.

Jack: The science museum is an absolute must-see. As an Arsenal fan the Emirates Stadium is a must-see. 

Rich: The dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum are worth seeing. I’ve heard Tottenham’s new Stadium is worth seeing. 

Jack: Have you thought of going to Borough Market? Have you thought about the British Museum?

Rich: Why don’t you go to a museum or a gallery? What about some Van Gogh and Da Vinci masterpieces at the National Gallery?

Jack: A must-see is an interesting phrase. It is used to describe something that is so good or interesting that you have to see it. 

Rich: To describe something as worth seeing means it has value but is not as strong as a must-see.

Jack: When making recommendations it’s common to make them in the form of questions. ‘Have you thought of’ or ‘what about’ plus the -ing form and ‘Why don’t you’ plus the infinitive are two common ways of doing this.

Rich: There are more explanations and activities for you to do connected to this lesson on the Premier Skills English website. You’ll find this podcast on the homepage or under skills > listen > podcasts.

Task

Jack: This week we want you to recommend three things to do or see in London.

Rich: If you know London or have visited London you can remember these things from your visit but if it was a long time ago or you’ve never been we’d like to give you some help to do this week’s task.

Jack: On the Premier Skills English website we have provided a link to the Visit Britain website that looks at all the things you can do in London.

Rich: We want you to take a look at the website and find three things that you could describe as must-sees or things that are worth visiting.

Jack: Make your recommendations in the comments section on the Premier Skills English website and try to use some of the language we have introduced in this podcast.

This week’s football phrase:

Rich: OK, it’s time for this week’s football phrase.

Jack: Remember you said you were going to make it difficult this week.

Rich: I am. It’s super difficult. Are you ready? This week’s football phrase is ** **** *** ****** **** ** ********. This phrase means to do everything in your power to do something. In football, it usually describes a team that is attacking with everything they have to score a goal and break down a strong defence.

Jack: That’s a great idiom. I’m going to give people a clue. My clue is ‘the keyword in this phrase is the place in the house where you make food’.

Rich: I can’t believe you are giving people clues! It’s supposed to be difficult.

Jack:  I think it still is. Let’s see who can get it right. If you know the answer, write it in the comments section at the bottom of the page. We will announce your name in next week’s podcast if you get it right.

Rich: We also need to give you the answer to the football phrase we set at the beginning of the show. It was one of Jack’s phrases and it was very easy! The answer was new signing.

Jack: Right, that’s all we have time for this week. Bye for now and enjoy your football!

Vocabulary

How much did you understand?

In the podcast, Rich and Jack used some words and phrases that might be new for you. Do you know the words in bold?

It’s probably a good idea to go on a Monday or Tuesday. Definitely avoid the weekends because it will be rammed.

They say Tottenham's new stadium is state-of-the-art but it’s not my cup of tea.

You could go to the London Eye, but the queues are massive and it’s a bit pricey and the view isn’t that great.

It’s quieter than other parks in London and has stunning views of the city.

I forgot that you were a bit of a cheapskate.

There were a few more tricky words and phrases in the podcast. Try the activity below, then, listen to the podcast again to hear how we used the words. This can really help your understanding.

Activity 1

Activity 1: In this activity, try to match the words and phrases to their definitions. All of the words were in this week's podcast.
Can you match the words to the definitions?

 The Shard is London's tallest building.

UK Cities

London

In the podcast, you heard a roleplay between a Londoner (Jack) and a visitor to London (Rich). London is visited by around 30 million overseas visitors every year and is one of the most popular destinations for tourists in the world. There are many things to do and see in London from Premier League football at five different stadiums to free world-famous museums and galleries such as the Natural History Museum and Tate Modern. In the roleplay, Jack gave some recommendations about what Rich could see and do while he is in London. 

Language

Recommendations

A recommendation = advice about what the best thing to have, do or see is.

To recommend = to advise or suggest that someone do something.

Before you visit a new city you will probably read things online about the city that are full of recommendations about things to do and see. Alternatively, you may ask someone who has visited the city what they would recommend. In the roleplay, Rich asked Jack for some recommendations. When we recommend something there are some common phrases that we often use:

If I were you ...

This phrase is a very common way to give a recommendation or advice to someone. 

if I were you + would + infinitive

The phrase is used to say what you would do if you were in the same situation as the other person. It's important to remember that we say ‘I were’ not ‘I was’ when we use this structure as it's a hypothetical (unreal) situation. The structure is also known as the subjunctive. Here are some examples from the roleplay:

If I were you, I’d try to go in the morning.

If I were you, I’d take a tour of Wembley stadium.

If I were you, I’d visit the Shard.

Wembley is the UK's biggest stadium and holds 90,000 people.

Would

We often use ‘would’ to be less direct when giving recommendations or advice. It makes your recommendation sound more like good advice rather than an order. Here are three examples from the roleplay:

In fact, while you’re in London, I’d suggest going to a few other Premier League stadiums.

It’s the oldest market in London and you’ll find food and drink from all over the world. I’d highly recommend it.

But if you want something for free I’d take a picnic to Greenwich Park in South London.

Have a think about how the sentences sound without 'would' or 'I would'. There isn't a change in meaning but can you sense a change in tone or register?

Modal Verbs

When we make recommendations we often use modal verbs such as must, might and could. Must is the strongest of these three. Here's an example from the roleplay:

You must do the tour at Wembley Stadium.

In this sentence, must is being used as a recommendation - he’s saying how good the tour is. He’s not using must as an obligation - to force me to do the tour.

Could is often used to give more possibilities or recommendations:

You could see mummies at the British Museum or Van Gogh paintings at the National Gallery.

Could is also used to introduce a possibility when you don’t recommend something:

You could go on the London Eye but the queues are massive and it’s a bit pricey.

Might is often used with ‘like’ for recommendations:

You might like to go to the shard.

This isn’t as strong as ‘must’ and is saying something is a possible option rather than a strong recommendation.

Tottenham's stadium is London's newest. It opened in April 2019.

Vocabulary

More words and phrases

There are other words and phrases we use to give recommendations. Look at these examples from the roleplay:

As an Arsenal fan the Emirates Stadium is a must-see. The science museum is an absolute must see.

I’ve heard Tottenham’s new Stadium is worth seeing. The dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum are worth seeing.

Have you thought of going to Borough Market? Have you thought about the British Museum?

Why don’t you go to a museum or a gallery? What about some Van Gogh and Da Vinci masterpieces at the National Gallery?

A must-see is an interesting phrase. It is used to describe something that is so good or interesting that they have to see it. It is a very strong recommendation. To describe something as worth seeing means it has value but is not as strong as a must-see.

When making recommendations it’s common to make them in the form of questions. ‘Have you thought of ...’ or ‘what about ...’ plus the -ing form and ‘Why don’t you ...’ plus the infinitive are two common ways of doing this.

Try the activity below, and complete the gaps with words and phrases you heard in this podcast.

Activity 2

Activity 2: In this activity, check that you have learned some of the key phrases from the podcast.
Can you write the word in each gap?

Quiz

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Task

London: My Recommendations

A view of London from Greenwich Park.

This week’s task is to recommend three things to do or see in London.

What would you describe as a must-see or something worth seeing or doing?

If you have visited London this task will be easy but if you've never been it might be more difficult. 

Take a look at the Visit Britain website and all the things you can see and do in London. Choose three interesting things to recommend to other listeners 

Write your recommendations in the comments section below (using some of the words and phrases we have introduced in this podcast) and don't forget to make a guess at our football phrase!

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Comments

mobeckham's picture
mobeckham
06/06/2020
TR
5797
points

I think this week's football phrase ( everything but the kitchen sinks )


mobeckham's picture
mobeckham
06/06/2020 02:41
Turkey
Manchester United
5797

I think this week's football phrase ( everything but the kitchen sinks )

mobeckham's picture
mobeckham
06/06/2020
TR
5797
points

Well , I haven't visited London yet but I'd love to visit someday.
If I went there someday , I'd like to see the historical Big Ben and take some photos there
Wembley Stadium is a must-see for me to take a tour in the stadium and watch a game in the FA Cup or for England
I think Buckingham Palace is worth seeing as well
and I could visit London Eye to watch London from a very high point
I would like to have a picnic at Hyde Park


mobeckham's picture
mobeckham
06/06/2020 01:43
Turkey
Manchester United
5797

Well , I haven't visited London yet but I'd love to visit someday.
If I went there someday , I'd like to see the historical Big Ben and take some photos there
Wembley Stadium is a must-see for me to take a tour in the stadium and watch a game in the FA Cup or for England
I think Buckingham Palace is worth seeing as well
and I could visit London Eye to watch London from a very high point
I would like to have a picnic at Hyde Park

Elizandra Camargo
17/10/2019
BR
7
points

Baker street its worth seeing place.


Elizandra Camargo
17/10/2019 02:32
Brazil
Liverpool
7

Baker street its worth seeing place.

Rich's picture
Rich
17/10/2019
ES
517
points

Yes, definitely! Baker Street is the home of Sherlock Holmes and there is even a song about this street!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo6aKnRnBxM

Thanks for your comment, Elizandra.

Rich - The Premier Skills English Team


Rich's picture
Rich
17/10/2019 08:28
Spain
Liverpool
517

Yes, definitely! Baker Street is the home of Sherlock Holmes and there is even a song about this street!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo6aKnRnBxM

Thanks for your comment, Elizandra.

Rich - The Premier Skills English Team

englishman
01/07/2019
DZ
1727
points

The phrase seems to have the word "kitchens" in the last.
If I were you I'd gave more clues in order to make it easy.
bye for now.


englishman
01/07/2019 23:09
Algeria
Manchester City
1727

The phrase seems to have the word "kitchens" in the last.
If I were you I'd gave more clues in order to make it easy.
bye for now.

Rich's picture
Rich
02/07/2019
ES
517
points

Hi Englishman,

Thanks for your message.

I think this is the most difficult phrase we've ever given to listeners. You're right it does include the word 'kitchen'. Do you want to make a guess?  If you want to know the answer we always share it with everybody in our next podcast :)

Rich - The Premier Skills English Team


Rich's picture
Rich
02/07/2019 09:38
Spain
Liverpool
517

Hi Englishman,

Thanks for your message.

I think this is the most difficult phrase we've ever given to listeners. You're right it does include the word 'kitchen'. Do you want to make a guess?  If you want to know the answer we always share it with everybody in our next podcast :)

Rich - The Premier Skills English Team

Palaciosdn's picture
Palaciosdn
27/06/2019
AR
47
points

I am football fan so if I were in London, I'd go to all matches. In fact, first I'd do a stadium tour for example Emirates Stadium, Stanford Bridge or Tottenham's new stadium. For me watching a match of Arsenal versus Chelsea or Spurs is a must-see. Also you might see any rugby game, I mean a test match. You'd go to a bar to watch it.


Palaciosdn's picture
Palaciosdn
27/06/2019 17:16
Argentina
Manchester City
47

I am football fan so if I were in London, I'd go to all matches. In fact, first I'd do a stadium tour for example Emirates Stadium, Stanford Bridge or Tottenham's new stadium. For me watching a match of Arsenal versus Chelsea or Spurs is a must-see. Also you might see any rugby game, I mean a test match. You'd go to a bar to watch it.

elghoul's picture
elghoul
20/06/2019
DZ
3988
points

No idea about the football phrase.

There are things worth doing in London.

After having a full English breakfast in a bed and breakfast facility, I'try a typical pub until mid-day. A swift tour to Borough market will be interesting before having lunch in a fast food where fish and chips are fresh and good. My next step might be seeing a PL match in the afternoon not in the night when I'd prefer to go to a popular theatre. 


elghoul's picture
elghoul
20/06/2019 16:02
Algeria
Manchester City
3988

No idea about the football phrase.

There are things worth doing in London.

After having a full English breakfast in a bed and breakfast facility, I'try a typical pub until mid-day. A swift tour to Borough market will be interesting before having lunch in a fast food where fish and chips are fresh and good. My next step might be seeing a PL match in the afternoon not in the night when I'd prefer to go to a popular theatre. 

Ghergana Kamenova
19/06/2019
BG
25
points

Unfortunately I haven't been in London. I'd like some day to go there.


Ghergana Kamenova
19/06/2019 12:25
Bulgaria
Newcastle United
25

Unfortunately I haven't been in London. I'd like some day to go there.

Liubomyr's picture
Liubomyr
19/06/2019
UA
4265
points

I think that the phrase is '** **** *** ******* ** *********'


Liubomyr's picture
Liubomyr
19/06/2019 09:19
Ukraine
Watford
4265

I think that the phrase is '** **** *** ******* ** *********'

romakisel
18/06/2019
RU
69
points

Football phrase - ** **** *** ******* **** (** *********)


romakisel
18/06/2019 13:49
Russia
Tottenham Hotspur
69

Football phrase - ** **** *** ******* **** (** *********)

Leaderboard

Top Scorers
RankNameScore
1mobeckham5797
2Alex_from_Ukraine5796
3kwesimanifest4754
4wsanta4690
5Liubomyr4265
6elghoul3988
7assemjuve3705
8aragorn19863557
9Gergő Nagy3396
10haydi3189
Country ranking
RankNameScore
1Colombia71265
2Ukraine33228
3Serbia27078
4Spain23482
5Albania20480
6Brazil19260
7Macedonia19063
8Bosnia and Herzegovina16268
9Vietnam15765
10Turkey14337
Club ranking
RankNameScore
1Manchester United126252
2Liverpool94969
3Chelsea79888
4Arsenal74443
5Manchester City46398
6Tottenham Hotspur12906
7Leicester City12139
8Newcastle United10031
9Leeds United5350
10West Ham United5142

Level

3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

Goals

Skills: Listening

Language: Phrases to recommend things

Task: Recommend three things to do or see in London