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Hi! My name is Ulrik, and this is my student blog. My posts will be based on tasks and subjects given to the class by my English teacher Ann. I am currently in my third year at Sandvika High School, Norway.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

London tour

This week, the English classes went on a school trip to London. Staying at the St. Giles Hotel, Monday-Friday, it became a great trip, packed with museum visits (and of course pubs). Among others, we went to Tate- modern, British museum, Churchill War Rooms, and Warner Brothers studios (the Harry Potter set).

Tate Modern

Myself, looking quite philosophical, at Tate Modern 
Tate Modern is Britains national modern art gallery, and the class went there the first day. With close to 4,9 million visitors each year, it's quite popular. The gallery is packed with modern artwork, and the exhibitions are called; 
  • 'History/Memory/Society'
  • 'Nude/Action/Body'
  • 'Landscape/Matter/Environment'
  • 'Still Life/Object/Real Life'
I am not that found of modern art, but there were some cool pictures, sculptures and whatnot. I really liked the exhibition showing Russian revolutionary posters. However, not really my thing (we ended up taking a cup of coffee).


Inside the BBC News Broadcast Room
One thing I really enjoyed was the BBC. Since some of us was part of the team working on Connected Learners, Ann got us a guided tour in the all new BBC building. Finished in 2013, the building (where over 6000 people work!) is extremely modern, and looked like a great workplace. I was staggered by the, well, positive vibes inside the building; everyone seemed extremely satisfied with their job. 

With coffee (or tee for those wanting to be a bit more British) in our hands, we was guided by a journalist and the head of BBC Technology, who got us inside the broadcast room (where they do editing and stuff for the BBC news, which of course happens live); it was simply awesome. On the top floor we got to see BBC Radio One, which was just as great. If there is one place I, right now, would have worked- this place definitely tops the list. 

The Rosetta Stone

British Museum

After a late nigh, and a groggy morning, me and my friends rushed to British Museum; a museum packed with artefacts brought in from those places once conquered by Britain. We had quite many hours there, so I teamed up with a friend, and managed look through a large part of the museum. Of course, one of my favourite places was the Egyptian section with mummies and stuff, and the infamous Rosetta Stone. What's so special with this stone? It was the key to solving hieroglyphs. In  1799, Napoleons soldiers found this stone by coincidence- and it was three years later brought to British Museums (because the French lost to the Brits in that campaign). Not long after, french scientists cracked the puzzle (the French  managed to smuggle out documents and and copies).

The Rosetta stone is in fact a Ptolemaic decree, dating from 196 BC. It tells which taxes to be cut, and what statues to be built (short version). The decree was ordered in three languages, hieroglyphs, wynen (similar to greek), and demotic- all three found on that stone, thereby making it possible to translate the hieroglyphs.

In addition to the Rosetta Stone, we saw a cool clock-exhibition, and what is basically whole Greek temples transported back to Britain. And yes, both Egypt and Greece (among others) has demanded that some objects are to be returned, but Britain holds on tight to most of it. 

(source: British Museum)

Churchill War Rooms

During the war, the Germans bombed London to pieces during the Blitz. Westminster and the government was of course targeted, and Churchill had no other option than to move underground. Today, this bunker (which remained top secret for many years) is open to audience- and you are able see how the entire war cabinet worked and kept the war effort going. One fun fact (if you can say that), is that the bunker was never built to withstand powerful bombs, so a German direct hit would have destroyed everything- but that never happened, so well. 

We went there, and it was really cool- I have been there before, so I sort of rushed trough- but everything is kept they way it was. Maps, chairs, offices, meeting rooms etc.- it is all there. The war rooms also contains a Churchill museum, showing everything about his life and deeds. 

Me and Sindre driving Hagrids Motor bike. (pardon the filter,
it was taken for Instagram purposes)

Harry Potter 

The last day, we went to Warner Brothers Studios and their Harry Potter set. Being a 8 movie long franchises, the set got bigger and bigger- and they decided to make a museum out of it. The great hall, wand store, costumes, cars (like the tree stories London bus), the model used for filming Hogwarts- it is all there. I am not the biggest Harry Potter fan, but it was actually really awesome. I was amazed by all the objects created for these movies; paintings, houses, cars, books- the list goes on for ever. 

Different guided tours (walks), pubs, restaurants and cafès

Here lived Lawrence Of Arabia
In addition to museum visits, we had a couple of guided walks showing us around London and Westminster. The first walk I, to be honest, feel was a gossip anno 1880 tour. Really not much information, other than who had a romance with who and so on. We got see some interesting places though- such as a house Lenin had lived in. The other walk we had, around Westminster, I found much better. We learned a lot about the parliament, and the area around. To my joy, we went past the house of one of my favourite historical characters; Lawrence Of Arabia. I might do a post on him later!

The rest of the time in London, I mostly teamed up with two friends of my (Sindre and Anne), and tested out cafès, went on sighting, ate good food (Chinese in Chinatown for example), and tasted the local beer. Overall, it was a really great trip!

Sindre, Anne and me. Tnx London!
(sorry for shitty front camera)


  1. Enjoyed your post, as usual. Look forward to reading you planned article on Lawrence Of Arabia, hope you take time to do that. The part description of British museum was good the Rosetta stone, now I know! Seems most of the students enjoyed that visit.. We all enjoyed our visit to the BBC! Everyone wanted to work there, although the coffee is better here!

  2. Flott blogginnlegg! London er en herlig by som jeg var heldig nok til å besøke forrige sommer. Veldig god engelsk. Lykke til med resten av året. :)

    Hilsen elev på Nordahl Grieg.

  3. Looked like fun! Wish my school would focus more on class trips.