Getting about London

London, the capital of the UK, is the greatest town and port on the British Isles. It is one of the largest cities of the world. London consists of three parts: the rich West End, the poor East End and the City – its financial part. One can say that the City is the Money of London, the West End is the Goods of London and the East End is the Hands of London.

Today over 50.000 ships come to London daily and the part of the Thames where the London port is situated is the busiest waterway in the world Getting about London.

Traffic in London differs from that of the Continent. In England they keep to the left but not to the right. In England people say: "If you go left, you go right. If you go right, you go wrong."

They say that once upon a time people kept to any side of the road they liked. But then they decided to make it a rule to keep to the left. As Napoleon hated the British very much, he decided that in France the people should keep to a different side. And later on in all the countries which he conquered he Getting about London made the traffic keep to the right.

In London one can see many buses, cars and taxes in the streets. The English omnibuses are often called double-deckers, because they are very high and have seats on the upper and lower decks. There are two main kinds of buses in London: the red double-decker and the red single-decker. The main places the bus goes to are shown on the front of the bus. Some double-deckers in London have automatic doors, and you pay the driver when you go in it. On the single-decker you buy Getting about London your ticket from a ma­chine in the bus. These buses travel between the main stations and stop at fewer stops than the double-deckers. But most London buses have a conductor who will come round and collect fares. The double-deckers of today are speedy and comfortable, but they seem to be very clumsy moving slowly through the endless line of taxis and cars of all sizes and models. Still they manage to maneuver very well without running into one another.

You can get a bus map of London at most underground stations. This map shows the routes Getting about London for all the buses. But you'll have to find the bus stop yourself and remember to look for the number of the bus on the post at the bus stop. You must do so because in busy streets there may be four or five bus stops close together. London's bus network is divided into four fare zones.

Double-deckers have seats for 65 people. Only 5 people are allowed to stand when the seats are full. So the conductor may stop you getting on the bus if there are five passengers already standing.

There are no trams in London. The Getting about London main transport is the Underground. The London Underground is often called the tube, be­cause it looks like a long, narrow and dimly lit tube, with its walls plas­tered with all kinds of advertisements. There are no vestibules in the London Underground. The sign of the London Underground a red circle crossed with a blue stripe can be seen on the buildings or just un­der a staircase leading straight under the ground. The London Under­ground stations are old and not attractive to the eye. Trains haven't any fixed schedule. During rush hours big crowds Getting about London gather. The tube tunnels seem to be very small, too narrow for a train.

One must be very careful using the word "subway" in London. It does not mean, "the Underground". It means "a passage under the street for pedestrians".

The London Underground (the Tube) serves all parts of central Lon­don and runs for 20 hours every day. Every line has its own name and col­our so it's easy to find your way around the system. Use the map to plan your journey. The Tube is divided into six fare zones. Zone I covers central Getting about London London. You can buy your ticket from the ticket office or ticket machines at any Underground station. Make sure you have the cor­rect ticket to your destination, including all the zones you will pass through, before you begin your journey, or you will be liable to a Pen­alty Fare. Many stations have automatic ticket gates. Insert your ticket in the slot, retrieve it and the gate will open. If the value of travel on your ticket is used up at the end of your journey the gate will open for you but the machine will keep your Getting about London ticket. Please try to avoid the busiest times. These are between 08.00 - 09.30 and 17.00 - 18.30 Mondays to Fridays.

The daytime bus routes and the Tube run until approximately 00.30. After this time you can use many Night Bus routes. Most Night Buses pass through Trafalgar Square and serve hotel and entertainment areas. All Night Bus route numbers are prefixed by the letter "N". Night Bus fares are slightly higher than daytime fares. There are no child cash fares on Night Buses; all children must pay the full adult fare.

VII. Answer the following questions:

1. Why does traffic in London differ from that of the Continent?

2. Are Getting about London buses in London blue or yellow?

3. Do all London buses have a conductor who will come round and collect fares?

4. How many people are allowed to stand in the bus when the seats are full?

5. Are there any trams in London?

6. How does the London Underground look like?

7. Why should you be very careful using the word "subway" in London?

8. What best recommendations about the London Underground would you give to

your friend, who is going to visit that city?

9.What means of transport would you use to see London at night?

VIII. Prepare a dialogue about traffic in London Getting about London:


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