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No one who’s experienced the British railway system can deny that it’s an over priced mess; to be honest, the cost of it is my main criticism as the majority of my train journeys have been on time and uninterrupted for the most part. But it wasn’t always that way. We may not make much anymore, but during the Industrial Revolution Britain steamed ahead with steel factories, coal mines; brilliant new innovations with trains, cars and a myriad of wrought iron creations that put us at the forefront of that revolution. We retain the pride of British industry and the quality of British made products remains in our collective consciousness even as our shipyards stand empty, our coal mines abandoned, and our railway systems neglected.

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Britain knows what it can do, because we proved it during the Victorian era. I admit, I’m fairly ignorant about our industry today. I know it’s a lot less than it was, perhaps more important things took over or our priorities changed to academia or the ever expanding world of computers, because we have a great pride in our institutions of higher education. The University of Oxford is most likely the oldest university in the English-speaking world, and the second oldest in the world; so old that the date it was founded is unknown. Cambridge University is the fourth oldest in the world, and the second oldest in the English-speaking world proving that we have a proud and impressive history in so many areas.oxford university

I understand the pride of what this country has done and what we achieved over so many centuries. I wish there was more than just a memory of that achievement that still existed today, but that’s a bitter effect of time passing. The Industrial Revolution couldn’t last forever, after all, and it did its job all over the world. We should keep that pride, safe in the knowledge that British industry once surpassed all others with its quality, that ‘Made in Britain’ should be neither a joke nor a favourite phrase of extreme right-wing groups. Throughout history, we have welcomed in waves of immigrants from all over the world; each generation has experienced its own ‘invasion’ of sorts from a different lands. We still have that reputation, that attraction for people to move here, a belief that we represent safety, opportunity and national pride in its best form. I very much hope that we don’t lose that standing in the world and that people carry on believing the best in us.

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Many bemoan that Britain is not as great as it was, for a variety of reasons. Granted, some things are worse and perhaps we could have done better in keeping the momentum we had during the Industrial Revolution. But many things are better, and we can still lead the way with growing wisdom and enlightenment. From Cornish pasties, scones and teacakes to steelworks and education, British products still show how much effort and pride we put into the things we make.

About the author

A chronic idiot with a passion for travelling and writing and travel writing, Rosie graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in English Literature and a Masters in Creative Writing. Whilst she aspires to be the next Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway, Dr. Seuss or E.L. James, Rosie prepares to enter the adult world and become a responsible member of society. Both of her university degrees go toward making terrible jokes, rambling blog posts and reading the popular literature that we all feel obligated to read. When she’s not sat in front of her laptop, Rosie can be found just about anywhere. With Iceland, Thailand, Barcelona and Belgium under her belt, there’s still the rest of the world to experience.

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