History Scene 1

Ashlie and Stephen take Tristan and his friend Jay Marie on a bus tour of London. Who is the better tour guide?

Watch the video. Then go to Task and do the activities. If you need help, you can read the Transcript at any time.

Preparation

Think about the following questions:

  • What things do you like to see when you visit a city for the first time?
  • Is it difficult to understand different accents, such as British and American accents, in English?

Watch Ashlie, Stephen and their friend Tristan take a visitor sightseeing in London.

Transcript

Ashlie: What’s the time? She should be here by now.

Stephen: It’s five past nine. She’ll be here in a minute.

Ashlie: We’re at Paddington Station with our friend Tristan.

Tristan: Hi.

Ashlie: And we’re waiting for Tristan’s friend Jay Marie to arrive from the airport. She’s just flown in from the States.

Tristan: Here she is! Hi, Jay Marie!

Jay Marie: Hi!

Tristan: Stephen, Ashlie, this is Jay Marie.

Stephen: Hello.

Jay Marie: Hi! I’ve heard so much about you guys. It’s great to meet you. It’s so awesome to be in London.

Ashlie: Ah, great. So are you guys ready for some sightseeing?

Jay Marie: Sure. Sounds cool.

Stephen: OK – let’s drop off your bags, and we’re ready to go.

Jay Marie: Cool!

 

Ashlie: OK, guys. So we’re going to take a double-decker tour around the city.

Jay Marie: A what?

Ashlie: A double-decker. You know, a bus with two floors. It should be here any minute now.

Stephen: Ah!

Jay Marie: Oh! Oh no, Stephen! I’m so sorry. All over your pants.

Stephen: My pants? No, no, no. It just went on my trousers. I’m fine.

Ashlie: Oh, look. I think that must be our bus coming.

Jay Marie: The one without a roof?

Ashlie: Yeah, so we can see more.

Jay Marie: Oh, great!

Stephen: Come on, let’s jump on.

Tour Guide: All aboard!

 

Tour Guide: Ladies and gentlemen, to your left is St Paul’s Cathedral...

Jay Marie: I didn’t catch any of that. What did he say?

Tristan: I think he’s talking about that building over there.

Tour Guide: It was on this site that the original St Paul’s was destroyed...

Jay Marie: No. I didn’t get a single word of that.

Stephen: Look, tell you what. I’ve got my guide book here. Why don’t I take over as your personal guide?

Jay Marie: Well, OK!

Stephen: OK, let’s see. Piccadilly Circus. Did you know that Piccadilly Circus was built in 1819 to connect Regent Street and the major shopping street of Piccadilly? The fountain with its famous statue of the Greek god Eros was added in 1893. Piccadilly Circus...

Ashlie: Oh Stephen, that is so boring! Listen, I’ve just looked it up on my phone and here is an interesting fact for you. Did you know that British people say, ‘It’s like Piccadilly Circus’ to mean that somewhere is busy and crowded and full of people?

Jay Marie: Really?

Stephen: Err, Ashlie. I’ve got the guide book. A book for guides!

Ashlie: Whatever, Stephen.

 

Stephen: Did you know that Tower Bridge was built between 1886 and...

Ashlie: And you know that song ‘London Bridge is falling down, falling down’? Well, most people think it’s about this bridge, but actually it’s about another bridge.

Stephen: And it was painted blue to match the colour of the Queen’s eyes.

Trafalgar Square. Did you know the column is 51.5 metres tall from the ground to the tip of the Admiral's hat? It was built between 1840…

Ashlie: Did you know that one of the statues in the Square changes once a year to a new piece of art? At the moment, it’s that big blue one over there.

Stephen: All right. That’s it! Give me that phone.

Ashlie: Give me that book!

Stephen: Jay Marie! Jay Marie! Who do you want to be your guide? Me with my expert guide book or Ashlie with her stupid internet facts?

Jay Marie: Huh? Well I was just listening to the audio tour. Sorry guys!

Stephen: What? Jay Marie!

Task 1

Task 2

Task 3

We can use the infinitive with 'to':

  • after some verbs, e.g. 'Are you waiting to see me?'
  • after some adjectives, e.g. 'His accent is really difficult to understand.'
  • to give reasons for actions, e.g. 'We went to the shops to buy some dinner.'

exercise

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Language level

Submitted by May Thida Su on Fri, 23/04/2021 - 15:29

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Can I have this song " London bridge is falling down " ? I just found the kids version.

Submitted by nikoslado on Thu, 13/02/2020 - 20:00

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DearTeam, correct,please, the error in 6th sentence \Task 3 (''full'' instead of written ''fully'') Ever thankful,Nikoslado

Hello Nikoslado

Fixed – thanks again!

Best wishes

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Abdelrazig Ibrahim on Thu, 22/03/2018 - 10:18

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I think this topic is full of information about London, public transportation,famous places and the history of London.

Submitted by Eva223 on Mon, 04/12/2017 - 09:20

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Hi louis, its me venuri sirinika. From this exercise i had a chance to practice pronunciation as well as i t inspired me to think and search answers only in english but not in sinhala

Submitted by Speig21 on Fri, 05/05/2017 - 15:58

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Hi teacher, I'd like to ask you what's the difference of meaning between "Pants" and "Trousers"? Speig21

Hello Speig21,

Here there is a bit of a misunderstanding between Jay Marie and Stephen. 'pants' in American English means 'trousers' in British English, whereas 'pants' in British English is 'underpants' or 'underwear' in American English. See the Cambridge Dictionary entry for 'pants' for examples.

Most of the time, Americans and British people have no trouble whatsoever understanding each other, but there are some words that are used differently in each variety of the language. One of our Quick Grammar pages and this How to video explore this topic in a bit more detail if you're interested.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by amin1993 on Sat, 22/04/2017 - 16:46

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Hi i join to this today,and i start learning english,this is my first lesson i just can say Thank You for your great and hard work Thank YOU

Submitted by nicky62 on Sat, 18/03/2017 - 19:55

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I might have some questions but id rather to thank the team for the hard tasks they are doing for learners for free. thanks all british council staffs.

Hello nicky62,

Thank you very much for your lovely comment! It's nice to know we're helping people!

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by STEPHANE ROTH on Tue, 28/02/2017 - 20:39

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When I visit a city for the first time, I like to see the main places and monuments, talk with foreign people, or try to talk and understand them. I go to restaurants and shops. I think American accent is usually more understandable than others. Australian accent needs some getting use to. British from London is ok. My accent is an awful french accent but I'm trying to get better.