T. Boys and girls, we studied the history of London at our English lessons. Would you like to visit London and see its historical sights? OK. We’ll board a plane and go to London. Then we’ll come back and you’ll solve a crossword puzzle, which will show who knows the history of London best of all.
WARMING – UP
T. But before our trip let’s repeat the names of historical sights of London and show them on the map.
One of you will come to the board and show them. Say after me: the Thames, London Bridge, the Tower, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament, the Tube.
WARMING – UP ACTIVITY
T. A fast plane is taking us to London. Now I ‘ll show you a video film about some sights of London and you’ll comment on the pictures, so you’ll be guides around the historical places of London. But not all the sights will be shown in the film, one will be missing. Watch and listen attentively, find it out, and tell us about it.
P.1: London is the capital of Great Britain. It’s one of the biggest and the most beautiful cities in the world. Here live about 8 million people. London has a long and interesting history. The Romans created the town of Londinium in AD 43. They built a wall around the town. It lasted 1,000 years. At first London was a small town. After many years London and 300 villages grew into a very large city. Some of the names of those villages you can find in the names of the streets in modern London – Kensington, Westminster and others. There were many wars in those days and people from other countries came to Great Britain and destroyed London, but new houses of stone grew up.
P.2: The Thames is not a long river. It is 350 km long and it runs into the sea. The English people call it the Father of London. London began on the Thames. When we go up the Thames we pass under London Bridge, the Tower Bridge and others. There is a museum of old ships on the Thames. These ships are from the history of Great Britain. If we go down the Thames we ‘ll pass the port of London and get to Greenwich – a very old town.
P.3: The Tower of London is a very old building. William the Conqueror built a stone castle in 1081. In the early days of the history of England the English kings lived in the Tower. Then it was a prison where many people died, black ravens had much food near the walls of the Tower those days. The black ravens live in the gardens of the Tower now. The legend says that without them the Tower will fall. The Raven Master is the man who gives them food and looks after them. Now the Tower of London is a museum and many tourists visit it. They see the black stone halls with small windows and thick doors. The walls of the Tower are 5 meters thick. In the museum visitors can see many old guns. Today the Tower has a small garrison of soldiers. They are the Yeomen Warders, often called Beefeaters. They are in their red and black Tudor uniforms.
P.4: London Bridge is 2,000 years old. The first bridge was made of wood. In 1209 people built the bridge of stone and called it London Bridge. There were houses and shops on it and people paid money when they crossed the bridge. Until 1738 London Bridge was the only road over the river. But the city grew very quickly and in 1960 the people of London wanted to build a large modern bridge at this place. A very rich American bought the old bridge and brought the parts of the bridge to Arizona in the USA. He wanted to show the old bridge in America to people for money. In 1973 the new London Bridge was opened on the site of the old bridge over the Thames.
T. There is an old English children’s song about London Bridge.
London Bridge is broken down,
Dance o’er lady lee,
London Bridge is broken down,
With a gay lady.
P.5: The 17th century was unhappy for London. In 1665 the Great Plague killed a quarter of all people in London. This is the monument to the Great Fire. It stands in the City. In 1666 the Great Fire started in a baker’s shop in Pudding Lane. London was burnt.
PUPILS : London’s burning, London’s burning,
Over yonder, over yonder.
Fire, fire, fire, fire.
Go and fetch me some water!
Thousands of people lost their homes. The fire destroyed four – fifths of the city, including St. Paul’s Cathedral and other churches.
P.6: After the Great Fire the great English architect Sir Christopher Wren made a plan of new London. People couldn’t build wooden houses any more, only stone ones. The builders were working on it for 36 years (from 1675 to 1711). St. Paul’s Cathedral now is the biggest and the most beautiful church in London.
WHO BUILT ST. PAUL’S?
P.5: Who built St. Paul’s
P.6: His name was Wren.
P.5: Yes, he built it.
Tell me when?
P.6: In the year that
King Charles II
Rulled in England.
Will that do?
P.5: Yes, but now please,
Tell me why?
P.6: I’m not sure, sir,
But I’ll try.
Fire had burnt the
That’s why Wren, sir,
Built St. Paul’s.
P.7: Buckingham Palace has been the London residence of British kings and queens since 1830.
P.8: Westminster Abbey is a royal church. It was built and rebuilt many times since 1050. It was finished in 1740. Westminster Abbey is one of the most interesting buildings in London. Almost all the English kings since William the Conqueror have been crowned there. Here you can see the thombs of many British kings and queens, writers and other famous people.
P.9: The Houses of Parliament is a very large building which stands near the Thames. There are two tall towers at the corners of the building and one of them is the Clack Tower. The tower and the clock were built in 1858. The clock has 4 faces and a very big loud bell. The man in charge of the building was Sir Benjamin Hall. This man was very tall, and the workers and his friends called him Big Ben. So they called the bell Big Ben too. Sometimes people call the clock and the Clock Tower Big Ben.
T. It is my favourite place in London. Big Ben is a kind of a symbol, it represents London and even the whole of England in a way. It is a very beautiful building especially in the dark when its shining faces are seen like a full moon, from every part of the sleeping city.
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