37 England – Did You Know Facts
Read the following 37 interesting facts about England and find out some travel news you’ve never heard of.
1.Big Ben does not refer to the clock, but actually the bell.
2. London has been called Londonium, Ludenwic, and Ludenburg in the past.
3. England is 74 times smaller than the USA, 59 times smaller than Australia and 3 times smaller than Japan. England is however 2.5 times more populous than Australia, and 1.5 times more populous than California. With 2.5 times less inhabitants than Japan, its density of population is slightly higher than the country of the rising sun.
4. French was the official language for about 300 years
5. The shortest war against England was with Zanzibar in 1896. Zanzibar surrendered after 38 minutes.
6. There is nowhere in Britain that is more than 74.5 miles from the sea.
7. British police do not carry guns except in emergencies.
8. England is often mistaken for the entire United Kingdom or Great Britain. This often offends people from other countries like Scotland and Wales.
9. The first telephone directory published in England contained 25 names.
10. The world’s largest second-hand book market can be found at Hay-on-Wye, a small village at the border of England and Wales. The village is also famous for proclaiming itself independent from the UK in 1977.
11. The first hot chocolate store opened in London.
12. There are over 300 languages spoken in England.
13. The English drink more tea than anyone else in the world.
14. In the Medieval Times, animals can be put on trial for crimes (and be sentenced to death!)
15. The world’s first drive through safari park opened at Longleat House (Wiltshire) in 1966.
16. “The Star Spangled Banner” (the American national anthem) was created by an Englishman, John Stafford Smith (1750-1836) from Gloucester.
17. “Pygg” used to mean “clay” in olden day English. People kept their coins in clay jars that were called “pygg jars,” which have evolved into what we currently call piggy banks.
18. Gargoyles were originally used as drain pipes!
19. The world’s first modern Olympic Games were not held in Athens in 1896, but in the small town of Much Wenlock (Shropshire) in 1850, which inspired French Baron Pierre Coubertin to launch the Athens Olympics half a century later.
20. Buckingham Palace has its own police station.
21. Chickens outnumber humans in England.
22. Windsor Castle is the largest royal home in the world.
23. The Queen has 30 god children.
24. The Queen owns all the sturgeons, whales and dolphins in the waters within 3 miles from the UK.
25. The Queen sent her first e-mail in 1976.
26. Prince William wanted to become a cop when he was younger.
27. He also has his own postage stamp.
28. It’s considered treason to place a stamp bearing the King or Queen’s image upside-down.
29. Prince Harry got in trouble for dressing as a Nazi to a costume party.
30.When Nelson Mandela met the Spice Girls, he called them his “heroes.”
31. James Bond’s code “007” was inspired by the author Ian Fleming’s bus route from Canterbury to London.
32. Francesca Gray wrote J.K. Rowling her first fan letter, but thought she was a man, and began her letter with “Dear Sir…”
33. J.K. Rowling is the first person to make a billion dollars from writing books.
34. Ginger Spice was originally Sexy Spice, but changed to better suit their younger fans.
35. No portrait was ever painted of William Shakespeare when he was alive.
36. Macbeth is the most produced play ever written. On average, a performance is staged every 4 hours somewhere in the world.
37. David Beckham has a fear of birds.