Author Archives: Carl

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Derby at White Hart Lane

Tottenham fans, White Hart Lane

Going to a football match in Britain is something else. It is not just a football match – it is a unique experience.

I have been at White Hart Lane, the home of Tottenham Hotspur, in North East London a few times now and every time I go there I get blown away by the atmosphere. The cheers from the crowd roaring inside the stadium can be almost deafening and people are singing during the entire match. What is different with Barclays Premier League from many other football leagues is that it is not only the biggest matches between the biggest teams that attract big audiences. Almost every match is packed with people and the atmosphere can be just as intense – if not more intense – in a smaller stadium than in the major ones.

Chelsea - Cole & Drogba

Chelsea stars Drogba and Cole

I recently visited a friend in London and went to the derby match between Tottenham and Chelsea. We started off by having lunch (classic football food: burgers and chips) close to the stadium with some other fans, discussing possible starting lineups, goal scorers and final score. The match ended 1-1 with Chelsea missing a penalty late in the game – to my great relief.

After the match we walked with the rest of the crowd (most of them still singing) to the bus stop and took a bus to Angel where my friend lives. We ended the day with a really nice dinner at a the local gastropub around the corner, called The Alma. London really is packed with great pubs!

The Alma

The Alma, a great gastropub in Islington

So, even if you are not that much into football, I can definitely recommend you to go to a football match in Britain. Tickets vary in price but doesn’t necessarily have to cost more than they do in the Nordics – but the entertainment is so much better!

Read more about the league and how to see a match at our football website.
See where White Hart Lane is located on our Britain Map.
Find The Alma on our Britain Map.

Come on you Spurs!

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Merry Christmas from Mind the Gap

London Eye in winter time

London Eye in winter time

Hello dear reader. With just a couple of days left until Christmas Eve, we want to wish you all a Merry Christmas. Thank you for following us and reading our posts during the last year. We promise to be back after Christmas with more hints and tips about our favourite country – Britain.

Here is some reading material for you who are going to Britain soon:

London in January = SALE
London Christmas Shopping Guide
Winter in Manchester

And last, but not least, a Christmas card from VisitBritain to all of you!

Best regards

/Carl, Gary, Helene, Jackie, Jette, Kim, Siska, Towe and Åsa


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Royal Wedding 2011: The Dress part 2

The speculation around the world is at full speed: Which dress designer will make Kate Middleton’s dress for her marriage to Prince William of Wales?

I can’t wait to hear who will fulfil this extraordinary commission. In the meantime, we present a list of ten possible designers – all British of course – who could make Kate Middleton’s wedding dress. Read “The Dress part 1” here. This is the second half of the list:

6. Erdem
The British fashion press would love to see an upcoming designer, who shows at London Fashion Week, get the job, and the extraordinarily talented Erdem Moralioglu would fit the bill. His romantic, often floral, confections show enormous skill, and his obsession with costume history and beautiful fabrics would produce a truly gorgeous dress. He has dressed some of the world’s most important women from Michelle Obama and Anna Wintour in the US to Sarah Brown and Samantha Cameron in the UK, and is stocked in Britain’s most prestigious fashion stores, including Harvey Nichols and Matches.

7. Stella McCartney
Educated at London fashion school powerhouse Central St Martins College of Art & Design, Stella McCartney made a great success at Parisian label Chloé, before launching her own label in 2001 with support from fashion giant Gucci Group. She is best known for making desirable clothes that women really want to wear in their everyday lives, but she does have past famous wedding form: She made Madonna’s wedding dress.

8. Amanda Wakeley
Ms Wakeley is another British designer who dressed Diana, Princess of Wales; she has also designed for Queen Rania of Jordan, as well as for Kate Winslet and Charlize Theron. Self-taught, she shows her beautiful, pared down and elegant designs on the official schedule at London Fashion Week, although she is known primarily for her eveningwear outside of fashion circles. A bias cut silk satin column is one of the silhouettes most associated with her designs, and she is becoming one of Britain’s biggest high-end wedding dress designers.

9. Philippa Lepley
If Kate decided to commission a specialist bridal couturier, then Philippa Lepley is considered a front-runner for the job, with several bookmakers making her the current favourite. Along with several other British wedding dress designers like Caroline Castigliano and Suzanne Neville, she has both the skills and experience to make a dress suitable for a state wedding. She opened her eponymous salon in London’s Fulham Road in 1990, specialising in elegant and simple dresses, using incredibly luxurious fabrics, often with hand beading and embellishments.

10. Roland Mouret
Mr Mouret makes some of the most desirable dresses in the world. With an instinctive understanding of how to flatter and fit a woman’s body, he makes every woman who wears his dresses look sublime. His client list is legendary, and although he only makes couture wedding dresses for a few favoured clients, we hear that they are breath-taking. 2011 will be his big year whatever happens, as he opens his first dedicated salon over the whole six floors of a townhouse on Mayfair’s Carlos Place.

Read more about British fashion designers here on our website.

(This list was created for VisitBritain by writer Sasha Wilkins, who blogs as LibertyLondonGirl. The thoughts of an English Fashion Editor in Manhattan on life, love, design, food & style.


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Winter in Manchester

Manchester Christmas markets

Christmas markets in Manchester. Image: VisitManchester

Do you want to take a weekend this winter but not sure where? Why not go to Manchester? The city’s Christmas markets are known as some of the best in the country and there is plenty of nightlife and cultural events to make a perfect winter weekend.

Christmas markets.

During December, Manchester is packed with Christmas markets all around the city.  From the specialist markets such as the Christmas Arts & Crafts market at Exchange Street or the new French market at King Street, to the traditional Christmas markets by New Cathedral Street and Exchange Square. Eat traditional winter food and drink some mulled wine while you think about what Christmas present to buy next.

Read more about the markets here

North Pole Bar

Manchester’s own winter bar is now open again! The North Pole Bar had over 100 000 visitors during its opening months of 2008 and 2009 and is now three times bigger than last year. It offers a perfect end to a busy day of Christmas shopping with cosy chesterfield sofas and vintage rugs, Asian food luxurious cocktails and live music. The North Pole Bar is situated by Manchester’s Cathedral Gardens and is open until 19 December.

Find your way to North Pole Bar with our Britain Map

A Christmas Carol

End your busy day in Manchester with a visit to the theatre. See the heart-warming Charles Dickens tale ‘A Christmas Carol’ about the grumpy old miser Ebenezer Scrooge who makes his staff work on Christmas day – until he is confronted by the Spirits of Christmas and starts to change his mind. The classic play is shown at the Library Theatre until 8 January.

Find your way to the theatre here

See more festive things to do in Manchester this Winter at VisitManchester’s website.


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Stockholm International Film Festival 2010

Win year passes to the film festival in Stockholm

This Is England '86

On the 17:th of November the doors open to the 21:st Stockholm International Film Festival. 180 films from 50 countries will be shown in different cinemas around Stockholm during 12 packed days. This year 13 of the films are British – here are the ones I am really looking forward to see:

Cemetery JunctionCemetery Junction
“If ‘The Office’ and ‘Extras’ were 70 per cent comedy and 30 per cent romance and pathos, then it is the other way around this time”. That is how Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, creators of said series, describe their new drama comedy “Cemetery Junction”. The film is said to be like a nostalgic love letter to the England of their youth with lots of winks to the British seventies. And with Gervais behind the wheels, I am looking forward to a few laughs!

This Is England ‘86
Shane Meadows, director of “Somers Town”, “This is England” and “Le Donk & Scor-Zay-Zee” is back with a follow up mini-series of his highly acclaimed “This is England” from 2006. The four hour series (hopefully there will be a couple of breaks!) continues where it left Lol, Woody, Milky, Combo and the others after “This Is England”. It is about how they enter adulthood in a badly-shaped Sheffield, where a job is as hard to get as a date with the Queen.

Four LionsFour Lions
The Brits have never exactly been known for their comical discretion and this certainly seems like an example of that. Can you find something more sensitive to joke about than terror? Not sure and that is why I am so keen to see Chris Morris’ “Four Lions”! Apparently it is about five men’s planning of a terror attack – and of how it all goes terribly wrong.

I am also keen to see many of the other British films, such as “Neds”, “All Good Children” and “Route Irish”. Read more about the films and the festival here.

To celebrate this British film storm coming to Stockholm we give you a chance to win year passes to the festival! So if you live near Stockholm and would like to snuggle up in a cosy cinema chair this November, click here to compete!


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Damn good coffee!

After my dad had been on my back about it for a while, I finally started watching the classic tv crime series Twin Peaks a few weeks ago. I never watched it on it’s first tv run (possibly because I was 7 years old back then) and it is just, for lack of a better word, fantastic. The eccentric FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper has become a favorite of mine, particularly his unpredictable changes of conversation – from the really brutal and serious matters in his work to the utterly trivial, like the “damn good coffee” that he takes “black as midnight on a moonless night” or the “fantastic trees” they have growing up in Washington. David Lynch really did succeed in combining humour and thriller in a very unique way.

Have you, like me, rediscovered this beautifully bizarre tv series? Or would you like to? Then you will fancy this:

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the first UK broadcast of Twin Peaks. To celebrate, the Battersea Arts Centre in London presents a weekend-long programme of theatre and film inspired by the series – including a 32 hour all-nighter cinema screening of all episodes in the Grand Hall!

The event will take place on 23-24 October, read more about it here. It seems to be sold out at the moment but keep an eye on it – sometimes you can get hold of tickets closer to the event. You need to bring your own pillow to sit on but don’t worry, cherry pie and coffee “black as midnight on a moonless night” will of course be served. Find your way to Battersea Arts Centre with our Britain Map.



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Support the Swedish finalist at London Design Festival

Swedish design student Michael Edenius’ “Clean Closet” is one of the 8 finalists in Electrolux Design Lab. Get a 2 for 1 discount to support him in London.

The London Design Festival takes place between the 18-26 September and celebrates all areas of design, from art to industrial design. Among hundreds of events and exhibitions all across London, Swedish appliance manufacturer Electrolux hosts the finals of their design competition Electrolux Design Lab. In the 2010 issue, design students from all over the world are encouraged to “create home appliances that consider shrinking domestic spaces“.

This year, we have a Swedish design student among the eight international finalists. Michael Edenius, student at Umeå Institute of Design, has come up with the concept for “Clean Closet” – a closet that washes clothing:

The final will be held at 100% Design London during the festival and will be broadcast live over the internet. The people’s choice winner is decided from the people’s vote so if you like Michael’s “Clean Closet”, vote for him here!

To celebrate the Swedish finalist, we also offer you a 2 for 1 discount on the entry tickets to 100% Design London. So if you are in London over the weekend of 25-26 September, make sure to pop by the exhibition and give Michael your support. Just enter the code “ELUX” when you purchase your tickets to get the discount. The 100% Design event takes place at Earls Court Exhibition Centre in London. To get there, take the District or Picadilly underground line to Earl’s Court (find the venue on our Britain Map to the left).

Read more about Michael’s “Clean Closet”, London Design Festival, 100% Design and Electrolux Design Lab.

Good luck Michael!


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