Scroll Down for Information on British TV, Radio, Food, Pubs, Clubs, Concerts and much more
Being a British Expat living and working in and around Orlando, Florida, most people as me what I miss about living far from my original home of London, England. They are shocked when I say apart from missing is Family, British History and the Monarchy, not very much. Why?, well there is so many little bits of England all over Florida and in particular Orlando and the surrounding areas. And it is easy to get those little things you miss from the good old country and here are a few tips I have found along the way that I think could be useful to other Brit's now living in and around Orlando. Some are my personal preferences and may not suit everyone but I am sure that most of you who read this will find one or two little ideas that you may not know. I have also added a few links to key webistes that can make these ideas come to life. Also if you are visiting the USA for the first time of need to know about what to before you arrive for Immigration and Security I have included some helpful videos from U.S. Homeland Security, TSA and the British Embassy and Consulate Services. So here we go...
British TV: For a selection of programs from Britain there is a few different places to find good viewing. Firstly in the United States we have BBC America we different programs including, Dr Who, The Graham Norton show, Whitechapel, Top Gear and many more.
Local PBS Channels play some classics comedies like Vicar of Dibley, The Good Life, Yes Minister, Are You Being Served, Men Behaving Badly, Miranda and Fawlty Towers. As well as dramas such as Masterpiece Mystery, Downton Abbey. The Ovation Channel replays BBC's Antiques Roadshow. See your local TV Provider for more details.
For those with either an IPod, ITouch, IPhone there are some great selections to be had via Apple's ITune Store. For the IPad, ITouch and IPhone there is some great App's. For TV choices for purchase for you can now select from the BBC America selection you can download Classic and new Dr. Who, Fawlty Towers, Red Dwarf, Torchwood, Skins, Survivors Coupling, Gavin and Stacey, The Young Ones, A Bit of Fry and Laurie, Little Britian, Black Adder, Top Gear, Yes Priminster and a few others. If you want to see more British programs on ITunes you can request this on their website and if enough people are interested they may be able to obtain those programs. If you want to go an purchase DVD's from Britian you can buy a Phillips DVD player as most of these come with ability to change the formatting to play British DVD's. Barnes and Noble and BBC America both have great lisitings of British DVD's in U.S. Format to purchase and include some great classic television. There are some internet sites suggesting boxes attached to your TV or computer but they can cost up to $60 per month. For Coronation Street and Eastenders fans it is very hard to find these programs anywhere but please search the web. The BBC IPlayer system does not work in the U.S. unless you can modify you pc region and there are websites to assist with this. BBC Worldwide are looking to add the US in the future but are concentrating on other countries currently. You can use IPlayer to listen to BBC Radio Live see my links below.
British Radio:ForIPod, ITouch and IPhone users BBC Radio has a great podcast lisiting on ITunes and most popular programs, such as Steve Wright, More Mayo (clips from the best of Simon Mayo's Drivetime Show) are avaliable for download but unfortunately minus the music on most downloads due to restrictions. There are also a couple of APP's that let you listen to all the BBC Radio and Commerical Radio Stations from the UK, although due to rights restrictions some of the broadcasts are blocked. Also on ITunes is a great library of BBC Audiobooks of old classic comedy programs from radio and television, including The Goons, Porridge, Only Fools and Horses and many more. The Archers fans can also get their fill from the choice of either the podcasts or older programs via the BBC Audiobook selections. On Apple Devices there is a App called Tune In Radio where you can listen live and record radio stations all over the world, including BBC stations. Some other great Apps are Captial FM, Classic FM, Gold, Heart, LBC and Xfm. Via your pc you can listen to some programs live via the BBC IPlayer Website see my attached links, such as the new Simon Mayo Drivetime Show (remember the time difference if you want to listen to live programs)Click Here To Listen To BBC Radio 1, Click Here To Listen Live To Radio 2, Click Here To Listen To Radio Five Live, Click Here To Listen To Radio 4 Extra Live
British Concerts of Music and Comedy See my full lisiting of events coming to Orlando and surrounding areas are just a scroll away see below
British Food: There is always a need to get back some of those British taste buds and to get British food there are many internet shopping places. The two best local Orlando stores are International Food Club on LB Mcleod, Orlando (see more links further down the page) and the best is The British Shoppe on at 809 N. Mills Ave, Orlando, both have a great selection of frozen and dried foods, candy and other British wonders. The best Pasties I have tasted in some time, and I have taste many in my time, is from the wonderful 4 and 20 Pasty Company, the have their own unique pasty creations. 4 and 20 Pasty are based out of Sarasota, Florida but their pies can also be found in some British Shops, On-Line and at their own store. For the best pies try The Proper Pie Company, who have the best Steak and Kidney pies, Sausage Rolls and some great British foods in the store and on-line. Some Publix have a good selection of candy, soda and tinned foods. The World Market stores also have a selection of Cadbury candy and a selection of Beers. At Walt Disney World you can visit the British pavillion for a good selection of foods and they have a British pub as well as a Fish and Chip bar attached. Also at Walt Disney World in the Downtown Disney area try Raglan Road and the fish bar next door, Cookes of Dublin, good food and a taste or Ireland. Talking of British Pubs there are plenty in the Orlando area or try St Andrews Tavern between Altamonte and Apopka on 436.
British News and Newspapers: For IPhone, IPod and ITouch users you can find out the latest news by downloading Sky News, BBC Radio News and ITN News on ITunes which has updates thoughout the day. Also ITN and the BBC both have APP's where you can read and see some news articales. For ITouch and the IPhone some great Apps include, ITN News, ITN Showbiz, BBC News, Telegraph, Independent, Daily Star, Sky News and Eurosport. On BBC America has BBC International news playing in the morning and at night, for newpapers see your local Orlando Gas Stations, Publix Supermarket or Barnes and Nobles bookstore. Also the internet has great sites including BBC News. Some local Orlando Gas Stations also have the Sun or Daily Mail papers in short supply. Also check the various newspaper on-line websites for the news and much more.
British Tea Rooms: These are in many areas around Florida and in South Carolina. Check out these websites: This Whole House and Great Tearooms of America for great sugguestions. Also Publix has a great selection of Tea's but ask if you cannot find what you are looking for. At Walt Disney World, Epcot, British Pavillion there is a great selection of Twinnings teas and Chinaware. If you are in the market to buy tea in wholesale why not try The Rather Jolly Tea Company, for great selection of teas.
Football or is it Soccer:There is many ways to watch the top matches in Florida, Fox Soccer Network and ESPN shows most top games from England and all over the world, quite a few British Pubs in Orlando also show top games and some specialize in which teams games they will show so ensure that you ask if you wanted a to view your teams match. In Florida there is plenty of pubs who have websites that will tell you in advance and Chelsea, Man Utd, Celtic and Liverpool are well served in the Orlando area. Chelsea FC have a great American website, see the link for more information. On the ITouch, IPhone and IPad download these Apps for great reports, SkySport, ESPN World Cup, ITN Sport, Eurosport, and for live Soccer feed try TVUPlayer with various Soccer channels or the FSN App (Fox Soccer 2 Go) which has either a free service with limited coverage of a Monthly, Quarterly and Yearly live subscritption fee to watch games. Or if you prefer you can go to the local British bars which have live football games, when avaliable. Chelsea has a great App where you can watch videos of games and interviews when you sign up for their Membership.
Formula One:For the Brits who follow Formula One motorsport tune to NBC Sports Network with coverage of the whole Formula One Weekend. Steve Matchett (ex Benetton Mechanic), David Hobbs (ex F1 and Motorsport driver), Leigh Diffey (announcer). Remember the time difference if you are visiting from out of the U.S. This coverage includes pit reports, practice, qualifying and the full race and interviews. I am a huge Formula One fan, having watched the sport since the 60's, spectated in the 80's and was a Formula One Photographer in the 90's and the NBC Sports Network coverage is one of the best I have seen. Also on ITunes check out BBC 5 Lives coverage of the weekends action. Some great Apps for your ITouch or IPhone are Formula 1 Timing 2013, which is a fantastic App with live feed from the track of Drivers on Track, Timing and Scoring, or the HiDefRadio App where you can listen live to BBC Radio 5 Live.
British Pub's:Here is a selection of the best British Pub's in and around Florida...
St Andrews Tavern: Located on 436 between Altamonte Springs and Apopka, this is as close as you can get to a true British pub. The food is wonderful with lots of home made dishes that leave you satisfied. Nice cozy atmosphere and plenty of activities going on, including football matches, darts and live music. Also provided is a take-away food both cooked and uncooked items. Check out their website for full details and sign up for their newsletter.
Location: 1119 West State 436, Altamonte Springs, FL 32714
Raglan Road: Situated at Pleasure Island, Downtown Disney, this is a purpose built pub to represent and a typical bar in Ireland, with Irish music, Irish dancing, British food and Disney prices. It is a charming atmosphere and can get very busy in the evening but still gives that Irish Crack' that you could be looking for. As this is a Disney location families are very welcome and it is worth a visit for the Irish dancing. Check out their great website.
Location: Pleasure Island, Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World, Lake Buena Vista
Cookes of Dublin: Its not a pub but is located right next door to Raglan Road in Downtown Disney. At Cookes of Dublin you find a great assortment of freshly prepared delights from the traditional Fish and Chips, Beef and Lamb Pie, Atlantic Scallops, Mini Battered Sausages and for desert try, not a deeped fried Mars bar but a, Dough Bar, which is a deep fried Snickers bar (Yum). Food here is a lot cheaper than at Raglan Road and you can eat in their small seating area or take it to go. This is a great place to grab a bite if you are touring Downtown Disney.
Rose and Crown Pub and Dining Room: Situated at the United Kingdom Pavillion, Epcot, this is a stop off point for most Brits visiting Epcot. English beer on tap and some snacks avaliable at the bar. The bar is not too large and can get a little crowded at times but families are welcome and it is a good presentation of a British pub. The Dining room attached offers various British meals but the best value for money is the Fish and Chip shop just around the corner. There is plenty of outdoor seating too and it is a fantastic place to view the Illuminations Fireworks in the evening.
Location: United Kingdom Pavillion, World Showcase, Epcot, Walt Disney World
The Moon Under Water: A British Colonial Tavern situated in St. Petersburg, FL. This is a great welcoming Tavern situated just off of the beach in St. Pete's and has an outside terrace and wonderful airconditioned Tavern inside. The food selection is huge, from Appetizers including Curry and Chips & Cod Fingers, The Curries include, Chicken, Tikha Masala, Vindaloo, Indian Green with authentic naan bread and pappadoms. British dishes include Fish and Chips, Pasties, Bangers and Mash, Chicken Pot Pie, Sheppards Pie. There is also smaller offerings including Banger Sandwich, a selection of Salads, Burgers, Fish and Chicken offerings. The Deserts include Homemade Bread Pudding and Homemade Cobbler of the day. Location: 332 Beach Drive Northeast, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 Website: http://themoonunderwater.com/
Fan Clubs and Networks:There are many British focused fan clubs, societies and organizations in the Orlando area. Check the internet for your interest field and I am sure you will find some great clubs in the area. A huge SCI FI network of Dr Who fans meet as Hurricane Who are they have a Convention happening in late October 2010 (check out their great website for more details or on ITunes or You Tube) and they also have other events that happen throughout the year. Also Chelsea fans check out the American Chelsea website for local area meets.
Most visitors to Florida that Self Drive may not know that major Highways have toll roads.
If you are self driving from Sanford and Orlando International Airports you will find as you exit onto the Highways you will be on a toll road.
Don't Panic most toll roads around the area have a cash payment toll booth and as long as you have cash you will be able to go through the toll booth.
You may also be asked when you pick up your car rental whether you want a Toll Transponder on your car. Normally these rental agencies will add the fee of your usage of EPASS Lanes after your drop off you car via the Credit Card information you leave with the rental company. This is a great way not to have to think about having cash for tolls and is avaliable from car rental agencies at the major Orlando airports.
A helpful hint if you do not want to hire a car with EPASS is to have plenty of American Quarters to pay the toll fee. The Toll road from Sanford Airport to the local Disney area is the 417 and fee is around $6.75 and from Orlando International Airport to I-4 is around $3.25 and therefore is you can have enough cash it is advised.
What is an EPASS Lane: It is a lane where people who own an EPASS Transponder. A Transponder allows the user to go through tolls without the need for cash but need to have a credit limit via their EPASS account. There are violations imposed on anyone who travels through EPASS Lanes without payment.
Many people when viewing this site have asked me about becoming a United States Citizen. I must say it was one of the most important, wonderful, exciting, challenging, rewarding and fantastic things I have done in my life and I am proud to be an American and love this country so much. I will tell all of you that if you are just casually thinking about becoming an American, then you will need to become alot more serious, as it is very long and hard process. Most people who try to become U.S. Citizens will face hard decisions because it will change your life and the amount of paperwork involved is very detailed and takes months and years to process, not to mention the cost in processing your application. America has a vast diverse culture with people arriving from all over the world daily. Since the years of terrorist threats experienced all over the world the USCIS takes a long hard look into your background, your reasons for coming to America, how you will support yourself, your health, and how serious you are about your application. You will need to study American History and present day Goverment, but for me this was very interesting and made me want to become an American even more. It took me 5 years to become and American and the day I took the Oath was a very proud day and I love the United States of America and what it means to be an American.
For more information on becoming a U.S. Citizen visit the following website and good luck...
Appointments are required for all services; please call (407) 254-3300
Appointments are available on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays between the hours of 9.00am to 12 noon and 2.00pm to 4.00pm. On Wednesdays they only handle emergency appointments on a request basis.
We are very excited to announce a special one evening event happening on Saturday, June 15th, 2013, Hurricane Who’s Summer Night. This event will be our second annual Summer Night Event. This event will be taking place at our convention host hotel the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at Sea World.
England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales! Here you'll find just about everything to eat from "Across the Pond"! We have the Largest Selection of British groceries in Central Florida. Heinz Beans, Branston Pickle, McVities Biscuits...Creamy Chocolates and tantalizing sweets from Cadbury, Nestle and Mars. Tea Time? Yes! PG Tips, Typhoo, Ahmad & Many More! Don't forget the Bangers! Sausages, Irish Bacon, Meat Bridies and Pork Pies...can alway be found in our frozen department. You're gonna need a Bigger Trolley!