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Thread: Being British XIV

  1. #1
    Honigkuchenpferd Hufflepuff
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    Being British XIV

    The old thread is more than full, so here's a shiny new one.

    As far as I see it, the last questions have all been answered, so on you go with all questions regarding all things that are British.
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  2. #2
    Serinah
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    Politics

    I'm writing a story where I need the Minister to have people, I'd normally call ministers, like Minister of Education, etc, and I've realised I know too little about British governmental system. So here I have several questions.

    1) Do I understand correctly that Foreign Secretary in Britain is basically the same thing as a Minister of Foreign Affairs in a country that has a president?
    2) I know that in Britain there are Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary, and so on. Are they all Secretaries of State? Or does that title mean some other, specific post?

    Thanks,
    Serinah

  3. #3
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    1) Do I understand correctly that Foreign Secretary in Britain is basically the same thing as a Minister of Foreign Affairs in a country that has a president?

    Yes, that's correct.

    2) I know that in Britain there are Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary, and so on. Are they all Secretaries of State? Or does that title mean some other, specific post?

    Here's a list from Wiki

    Current positions

    Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (usually referred to as the Foreign Secretary) (1782; took current name 1968)
    Secretary of State for the Home Department (usually referred to as the Home Secretary) (1782)
    Secretary of State for Scotland (1926)
    Secretary of State for Education (2007, took current name 2010)
    Secretary of State for Defence (1964)
    Secretary of State for Wales (1964)
    Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1968 both Minister of Labour and Minister of Social Security elevated to Secretary of State running separate departments; departments merged with current name 2001)
    Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1972)
    Secretary of State for Transport (1976; name not used 19791981; subsumed in other Departments 19972002)
    Secretary of State for Health (1988)
    Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport (1992; took current name 2010)
    Secretary of State for International Development (1997)
    Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (2001)
    Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (2006)
    Secretary of State for Justice (2007)
    Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (2007; took current name 2009)
    Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (2008)

    The honorific title First Secretary of State is awarded occasionally. It has been in existence since 1962 and has been in continuous use since 2009.
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  4. #4
    Serinah
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    Thank you so much, Carole! I actually tried to google the topic, but there was too much information and it got really confusing. I've no idea why I didn't look into wiki. I usually do.
    Everything's cleared up now, thanks!

  5. #5
    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    People still have answering phones at home, and in offices, but most people would also check the mobile and/ or leave a message on that.

    Most actors live in London, or at least do until they've "made it". I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "find them". I've heard it's practically impossible to go to LA and not see a celebrity, whereas I've lived in London most of my life and whilst I've seen a fair few it's not like you see one every day. I've never seen ALan Rickman even though he lives only a few blocks from me.
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  6. #6
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    I've got two questions:

    Do Brits still use answering machines (y'know, those desk phones that require a connection and all) or is it just mobile phone usage these days?

    AND

    Where do the British film stars generally live? Like in the USA, you can usually find them in LA. In India, they usually live in Mumbai. So... where (in England, specifically) can you find them?

    Thank you in advance.
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  7. #7
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Regarding where actors live. It really depends what sort of actor they are. For instance, if they're in a soap opera based in the North of England, then they generally won't live in London.

    I live near a few famous (ish) people. Some are TV reporters and some are actors. I see some of them quite a bit, but it's all very casual. You don't get them being chased by the paparazzi because they're very normal people. Most celebs in UK (unless they're a Premier League footballer, or an ex Big-Brother contestant) go shopping etc with no fuss whatsoever.

    If you want to go lookfor a celeb then you could do no worse than take a walk through the trendier areas of London like Notting Hill, or in expensive shops (Harrods, Selfridges), or try the apparent exclusive clubs, bars and restaurants,

    I still have an answering machine at home. I don't want everyone to have my mobile number, so I leave my home number for most people.

    ~Carole~
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  8. #8
    Sixth Year Hufflepuff
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    Thank you Carole and welshdevondragon, for your help! And I guess Mumbai's the only place where you could have stayed 19 years and still have seen just three or four celebs.

    However, there is another question: How does the weather in London get by the end of May?

    Thanks once again, guys!
    ~ Pooja

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  9. #9
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    We've just had the driest (and possibly warmest) April on record. May is, usually, warm and the weather fairly good (but we had a ground frost the night before last). We'll get rain (but probably not much) for about ten days (only a couple of inches over the month and temperatures will rance from 6-16 degrees. They are average max and min, so it could get hotter and it probably will as june approaches.

    Remember, scotland is colder (if your story is set in Hogwarts, it won't be that warm, and it will probably be wetter.

    Neil

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  10. #10
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    This is more geared toward the women here - What would a young woman Londoner wear in the summer? This is for current times. I have a character with a Muggle-born friend being schooled on what to wear because they're going to be staying in Muggle London for some time. I have them wearing shorts quite a bit, but I think I remember reading somewhere that Londoners don't wear shorts very much. Now, this fact could be entirely false, but being from America I really don't know for sure.
    Thanks!
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