Links to websites

These links are to sites that give more information on topics that are mentioned in each unit of your Britain Student's Book.

Please note: this article contains external links. OUP is not responsible for the content of external sites nor do we endorse any companies or organisations linked to. Any views or opinions expressed in the article are those of the author(s).

The Office for National Statistics
This is the body responsible for the quality of national statistics. It is independent from the government but funded by general taxation.

UK Border Agency
This website gives information about British citizenship and other forms of British nationality.

The Home Office
This is the government department that deals with immigration and passports, drugs policy, anti-terrorism and the police.

The official government website for citizens. It provides access to public services and information.

The British Library

The National Trust - Surnames
Look up the distribution of surnames in Britain. Try searching for 'Jones' or 'McDonald' and see what you notice.

BBC Eurovision

02 History

British History Online
A digital library containing some of the core sources for the medieval and modern history of the British Isles.

BBC History
Original content on a variety of historical topics, mostly British.

The Royal British Legion
The official website of the leading organisation for British service veterans.

Stonhenge is a prehistoric monument in the county of Wiltshire. This is the official website.

Hadrian's Wall Country
Hadrian's Wall is a Roman wall on the border of England and Scotland. Nowadays, it is a very popular tourist destination.

03 Geography

BBC - Coast
'Coast' is a very successful documentary series by the BBC that explains about the history and geography of the coastal areas around Britain.

Britain in pictures
The website of a BBC series.

BBC - Weather
Search for weather forecasts in different parts of the UK and all over the world.

Met Office
The Met Office monitors weather and climate change for the UK and worldwide.

Department of Energy and Climate Change
The official government site.

Cardiff City Council
London City Council
Edinburgh City Council
Belfast City Council

Seasonal Affective Disorder
Information on SAD (also known as 'winter depression' or 'winter blues').

Giant's Causeway
The official website of the Giant's Causeway - a famous geological World Heritage Site on the Irish coast.

04 Identity

BBC - Voices
Resource for exploring language diversity in the UK. The website includes voice recordings of social and regional dialects.

Notting Hill Carnival
Official website of the biggest Carnival in Europe.

BBC - Asian Network
Official website of the BBC national radio station that is orientated towards British Asian life, culture and music.

Welsh language board
Useful background information about the Welsh language and about the Welsh Language Board and its work.
Scots Language Centre
Scots is the traditional Germanic language of Lowland Scotland and the Northern Isles. This website promotes the Scots language.

A BBC resource for learning the basics of the Irish language.

Schools Across Borders
The website of a non-governental educational organisation. It works within secondary schools in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Israel, and Palestine in order to provide for direct exchanges and encounters between school groups from both sides of the borders.

Friends Reunited
The website helps you find friends from England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Singapore, Hong Kong or Malaysia.

Genes Reunited
The largest family tree tracing site in the UK.

Icons of England
A resource of material about English cultural heritage and icons that represent England.

05 Attitudes

National Trust
The National Trust protects special places in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, for ever, for everyone.

National Trust Scotland
The National Trust for Scotland is Scotland's leading conservation charity and cares for Scotland's heritage.

Official UK site of the world's leading independent environmental organisation.

Official site of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

National Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children.

Consumers' Association
The site of a consumer rights organisation in the UK.

Money Saving Expert
A website that aims to save you money. It is ranked in the top 3000 high usage websites in the world.

Metric Martyrs Defence Fund
The Metric Martyrs are a group of British food sellers and anti-metrication campaigners in the United Kingdom.

British Social Attitudes Survey
British Social Attitudes Survey list of datasets

A resource of opinion polls related to public opinion and consumer behaviour.

06 Political life

Number 10
The UK Prime Minister's homepage, providing news and information about the activities of the Government, a history of Number 10 and previous Prime Ministers.

The official website of the British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS).

Office of Public Sector Information
The Office of Public Sector Information is at the heart of information policy, setting standards, delivering access and encouraging re-use of public sector information.

Private Eye
Official version of this satirical publication.

The Yes (Prime) Minister Files
Site about the BBC comedy series Yes Minister and Yes Prime Minister.

Official party websites:
Liberal Democrats

07 Monarchy

The Official Website of the British Monarchy

Historic Royal Palaces
Official guides to many of the royal family's homes and palaces.

The UK Honours System
The honours system recognises merit and service to the nation.

The Royal Collection
Features information on royal residences, palaces and art collections.

The Guardian - Monarchy
Ongoing collection of news, comment and analysis on the royal family.

BBC - Monarchy
Website of a BBC series called 'Monarchy', which gives insight into the life and work of the Queen and royal family over the course of a year.

08 The government

HM Treasury
'The Treasury' is the government department responsible for developing and executing the British government's public finance policy and economic policy.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Features in-depth advice for every country in the world. It is updated regularly for all British travellers.

Cabinet Office
The Cabinet Office coordinates policy and strategy across government departments.

Websites giving information on government services:
Civil Service
London City Council
Communities and Local Government
Local Authorities

Local Government Structure
Local Government Association website. An explanation of the structure of local government and the names of existing authorities.

09 Parliament

United Kingdom Parliament

Parliament Live
Live webcasts of proceedings from the UK Parliament comprising video feeds from The House of Commons and The House of Lords.

BBC - Parliament
A dedicated politics channel from the BBC.

The House of Commons official report.

House of Lords Appointments Commission
This organisation recommends people for appointment as non-party-political life peers in The House of Lords.

Official national parliamentary websites:
The Scottish Parliament
Northern Ireland Assembly
Welsh Assembly

BBC - Prime Minister's Questions
Question Time in Parliament when backbenchers ask questions of the Prime Minister which he or she is obliged to answer.

10 Elections

The Electoral Commission
Independent body which reports directly to Parliament, responsible for supervising and implementing the new regulatory framework for the electoral system.

About my vote
Site run by The Electoral Commission. Explains how voting and the various local and national elections work, and how to register to vote.

UK Office of the European Parliament

UK Polling Report
Independent survey and polling news.

Electoral Reform Society
Campaigns for proportional representation and the Single Transferable Vote system in parliaments, assemblies and councils.

General Election 2005
Summary of the 2005 general election results.

11 The Law

Ministry of Justice
The Ministry of Justice is responsible for the courts, prisons, probation, criminal law and sentencing.

Her Majesty's Courts Service
Agency of the Department for Constitutional Affairs whose remit is to deliver justice effectively and efficiently to the public.

Scottish Courts
An access point for information relating to civil and criminal courts within Scotland.

Metropolitan Police
The largest police service operating in Greater London.

Home Office - Crime Statistics

Home Office - Crime Reduction

12 International Relations

The Commonwealth
United Nations Association UK
UK Office of the European Parliament

The EU in the UK
Official website of the EU in the UK.

Home of the UK Ministry of Defence

13 Religion

BBC - Vicar of Dibley
Information on the hit TV comedy about a female priest in a country village.

Office of the Archbishop
The Archbishop of Canterbury is the chief bishop and principal leader of the Church of England.

The Church of England
The Church of Scotland
Catholic Church in England and Wales
The Methodist Church of Great Britain
Baptist Union of Great Britain
United Reformed Church
Kagyu Samye Ling

14 Education

Department for Children, Schools and Families
UK government department with responsibility for children's services, families, schools and14-19 education.

The Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills (Ofsted) is the governmental department for schools inspection.

Qualifications and Curriculum Authority
The regulatory body for public examinations and publicly funded qualifications.

UCAS is the UK central organisation through which applications are processed for entry to higher education.

The Open University
Open University is the UK's largest university for part-time higher education.

A. S. Neill's Summerhill
Official website of Summerhill school.

British Council
The British Council is the UK's international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities.

15 The economy and everyday life

Trades Union Congress
The national trade union centre in the UK, representing the vast majority of organized workers.

Confederation of British Industry
The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) is the premier lobbying organisation for UK business.

Official site of the National Farmers' Union.

Job Centre Plus
Provides help and advice on jobs and training for people who can work and financial help for those who cannot.

HM Revenue and Customs
Includes information about the UK's customs and tax department and includes the prototype on-line VAT (Value Added Tax) returns system.

Bank of England
The Bank of England works to maintain a stable financial system.

London Stock Exchange

FTSE The Index Company

16 Media

The BBC's homepage.

BBC - iPlayer
Internet users in the UK can watch BBC TV shows from the past 7 days.

BBC Radio


Channel 4


British Newspapers Online
Links to all the main British newspapers.

Press Complaints Commission
The homepage of the Press Complaints Commission, the independent body which deals with complaints from members of the public about the editorial content of newspapers and magazines.

The independent regulator and competition authority for the UK communications industries.

BBC Radio - World Service

17 Transport

Department for Transport
The government department responsible for transport issues (except when devolved), in particular railway franchising and a range of executive agencies.

Click here to see a picture of a Routemaster bus, and to find out more information about Routemaster buses.

Transport for London
Information on all forms of public transport in London, routes, maps and journey planners.

18 Welfare

Citizens Advice Bureau
A network of independent charities throughout the UK that give free, confidential information and advice to help people with money, legal, and other problems.

Official site of the National Health Service.

British Medical Association
The leading organization of doctors in the UK.

Department of Health
Official website of UK Department of Health, the government department responsible for public health issues.

19 Housing

Housing Corporation
The government agency that funds and regulates landlords in England.

Planning Portal
Government gateway to planning information throughout the UK. Provides information on plans, appeals, applications, contact details, research areas.

Big Issue
The website of the charity that produces The Big Issue magazine that is sold by homeless people.

20 Food and drink

The Great British Kitchen
Information on British food, its past traditions, and future potential.

British Beer and Pub Association
The British Beer and Pub Association is the UK's leading organisation representing the brewing and pub sector.

The Fat Duck
The website of a restaurant that is known for its unusual dishes, which include sardine on toast sorbet, snail porridge, and salmon poached with liquorice.

Jamie Oliver - School dinners
This part of the website of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver gives information about his campaign for healthier school dinners.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Official site of the government department.

Food Standards Agency
Independent UK government department set up to protect the public's health and consumer interests in relation to food.

21 Sport and competition

BBC - Sport
Sports coverage on the BBC.

British Olympic Association

Cheese Rolling in Gloucestershire

Royal Horticultural Society

British Horseracing Authority

Greyhound Board of Great Britain


The Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race
Official website of the famous race that takes place in London between Oxford and Cambridge Universities every year.

Rugby Football Union

The English home of cricket.

Lawn Tennis Association
The official website of Wimbledon.

Sports results
Results of recent UK fixtures all in one place.

London Marathon

The National Lottery
The largest lottery in the United Kingdom.

22 The arts

Department for Culture, Media and Sport
This government department aims to improve the quality of life for all through cultural and sporting activities, to support the pursuit of excellence and to champion the tourism, creative and leisure industries.

Arts Council England

Scottish Arts Council

Arts Council of Wales

Arts Council Ireland

Arts Council of Northern Ireland

Tate Britain
Tate is a family of four art galleries housing the UK's collection of British art. Tate Britain is the home of British art from 1500 to the present day.

Royal Shakespeare Company
The famous theatre company based in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Royal Opera House
A venue for opera and performing arts in Covent Garden, London.

British Film Institute
A charity set up to encourage the development of British film.

The Man Booker Prizes
Official site for the annual contemporary fiction award, to writers from the British Commonwealth and Ireland.

BBC - Big Read
The website of the top 100 books of all time, as nominated by BBC viewers in April 2003.

23 Holidays and Special Occasions

Gretna Green
Tourist information about Gretna Green.

BBC Food - News and Events
Seasonal recipes and culinary information for special occasions.