雅思听力在线专项练习 #5 听力原文

Listening Activity No. 1

When travelling on the Tube or walking around busy places, be alert. Keep your handbag and other possessions securely with you. You will be warned by signage about pickpockets in the tourist-heavy areas. You can have your bag taken and the pickpocket can be out of sight before you even notice, so be very aware. However, there is no need to be scared—it is generally safe to use public transport and walk around at night.

Never leave your handbag on the seat next to you on the Tube or in a restaurant or outdoor cafe. Also, if you hang your coat on a coat rack in a restaurant, be sure you don’t leave anything valuable in your coat pockets, like your mobile phone.

Always be aware of your surroundings and act accordingly. Don’t rummage through your handbag or count the money in your wallet when you’re riding the Tube or standing in the street.

If you stray off the beaten track, chances are you will stray into a more rough and deprived area than the more tourist-friendly parts. Keep your wits about you.

Listening Activity No. 2

Hello. As VP Finance, my job is to oversee the spending of our grant to ensure that all areas of Student Union activity run efficiently and smoothly, without any financial headaches.

I have a thoroughly efficient finance team—Ursula, Ella and Henryk. We are all here to help you as best as we can. Remember that even though I administer the Union’s finances, it is ultimately you who have the final say in expenditure policy either directly, through the democratic process of the General Meetings, or by voicing your opinions through the Executive Finance Committee. I would like to take this opportunity to thank last year’s VP Finance, Martin Currie, for his excellent work in improving the financial running of the Union to what it is today.

Finally, remember to enjoy yourself and to use the Union facilities and services to the full. And if you’re still not satisfied, come and let us know why. Extra note: In order to maximize my time as VP Finance and to give a more efficient service to students, the Finance Office will only be open to students from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm. The Cashiers Office will be open from 12:00 noon to 2:00 pm daily.

Listening Activity No. 3

Good morning. I’m James Austin, an animal researcher. Today I’d like to talk about the bats. Many people are terrified of the black creatures that hang upside down and fly in the dark.

Lately bats have become more popular. The reason is that the last few summers have been unusually warm with more mosquitoes than usual. Bats eat mosquitoes, sometimes up to 600 in an hour. Bats are an environmentally friendly way to get rid of mosquitoes. So some people who didn’t like bats now actually want them to come back.

In preparation for more hot summers, people are building bat houses in their basements or garages. The problem is that most people don’t know what bats really like. I guess that about 40 percent of the bat houses will remain empty. Bats like hot places so bat houses should be of a dark color to hold the heat inside. They should be 12 to 15 feet off the ground, but not in a tree where they will cool off too quickly when the sun sets. People like the idea of getting rid of mosquitoes without using harmful chemicals.

Listening Activity No. 4

(Patricia bought a videocassette recorder two weeks ago and she has some problems with it now. She is phoning the shop.)

Salesman: Hello, can I help you?

Patricia: Yeah, I hope so. I’ve got a problem with a Sony videocassette recorder that I bought from your shop.

Salesman: A VCR?

Patricia: Yeah.

Salesman: Programmable, isn’t it?

Patricia: Beg your pardon?

Salesman: Programmable.

Patricia: What do you mean by “programmable”?

Salesman: You can programme the VCR to record TV shows while you’re away.

Patricia: Yes, that’s what it is—what it ought to do. Yes, but I’m afraid it’s not doing that. It won’t record when I set the timer.

Salesman: How long have you had it?

Patricia: Only two weeks. I think it’s got a one-year guarantee, hasn’t it?

Salesman: Yes, I believe it does.

Patricia: Yeah, the problem is that I can’t find the guarantee certificate.

Salesman: You’ve got your receipt?

Patricia: Yes, I’ve got the sales receipt. Yes, now.

Salesman: Yes.

Patricia: Uh, can I bring it in to you?

Salesman: Yes, I’d suggest you bring it back.

Patricia: Yeah.

Salesman: I’ll take your name, just let me get a piece of paper, right, your name is…?

Patricia: OK. My name is Patricia Hedge.

Salesman: Yes, Miss Hedge, and the address?

Patricia: It’s 27 Greenford Avenue.

Salesman: Greenford Avenue. I know where that is.

Patricia: OK.

Salesman: Well, if you bring it in, with your receipt.

Patricia: Yeah, I will.

Salesman: I’ll now talk to my manager about it and…

Patricia: Yeah.

Salesman: Um, You’ve had it for two weeks?

Patricia: Yes, two weeks.

Salesman: Two weeks. All right.

Patricia: All right. Thank you very much for your help.

Salesman: I’ll put it down in a book, so that if I’m not here, somebody will know about it. All right?

Patricia: OK. Thanks a lot.

Salesman: Oh, sorry. How much did you say you paid for it?

Patricia: 100 pounds.

Salesman: I see. All right. I’ve got the particulars. Thank you then.

Patricia: OK. Thank you. Bye.

Listening Activity No. 5

(Mr. Smith wants to open a bank account. He comes to a Barclays Bank and talks to one of the staff there.)

Clerk: Good afternoon. What can I do for you, Sir?

Smith: Good afternoon. I have just come to London for a visit. I need to open an account, but I don’t know what type of account I could open.

Clerk: All right. How long will you stay in London?

Smith: A couple of months, then I will go back to my country.

Clerk: And how much money would you like to put in the bank?

Smith: About two thousand pounds.

Clerk: Well, you could open a Higher Rate Deposit Account. It requires five hundred pounds to open the account.

Smith: What is the advantage of this account?

Clerk: As the name implies, the main feature of this option is that interest is nine per cent on net and eleven point five on gross. If you are a non-resident, you could get interest on gross. And another bonus point to note is that interest is calculated daily and paid quarterly. In other words, the interest earned over a quarter, you are getting interest on your interest.

Smith: Oh, I understand. How can I withdraw money? Do I get a cheque book?

Clerk: I’m afraid the only access to it is to come to your branch.

Smith: I see. What happens to the account if the balance goes below five hundred pounds?

Clerk: The rate of interest will be reduced and goes down to five point five-two per cent. You can go below five hundred pounds, but you can’t overdraw on this account.
Smith: What should I do if I want to close the account?
Clerk: One day’s notice is needed. You should go to your branch and give notice that you would like to close the account. Then, come in the following day and take your money out. That’s it.
Smith: Thank you very much for your help. Now I would like to open a Higher Rate Deposit Account.
Clerk: That’s lovely. Please fill in this form.

Listening Activity No. 6

I’d like to welcome you all here today and to say how pleased we are with the interest you have shown in our PGCE training course at Sussex. We hope this morning to provide you with a brief introduction to the course, and take you around the department to meet some of the present trainees. Please don’t hesitate to raise with me any questions that may come up.

Firstly, let me say something about our approach to teacher training. There is a variety of opinions about the proper balance that should exist within initial teacher education between working in schools and the study of the disciplines of education. Our strong conviction that beginning teachers need to confront and reflect on ideas about the aims and methods of education shows the weight we give to the latter. But we believe even more strongly that the craft of teaching is best learnt in school, working with practising teachers. This is why teachers in school are our partners in providing the course, and why there is a major stress on the school experience. Finally, we believe that learning should be an enjoyable activity, conducted in cooperation rather than competition with others, and we hope that the university and school settings and the structure of the course enable it to be so. In the university, most of the teaching takes place in small group seminars and workshops, and the Sussex interdisciplinary ideal is maintained by many tutors who are engaged in teaching and research in Arts, Social Studies or Science, as well as in Education.

Most applicants are interviewed before places are offered. This not only helps us with the selection process, but gives you the opportunity to decide whether our course is for you. You’ll generally know a couple of weeks after the interviews whether your application has been successful or not. Well, if there are no questions, let me hand over to Mrs. Jean Brodie, who’ll tell you a bit about the actual course content.

Listening Activity No. 7

Ladies and gentlemen, if I could have your attention for a moment, please. We’re arriving at Cambridge now, and there are a few important things I need to say.

First of all, please remove all valuables from the coach, because we can’t guarantee their safety. That’s all cameras, bags of value, etc. Thank you. Now, it would be a good idea to make a note of the number on the front of the coach, so that you can recognise it in the coach park.

Turning to the tour, I’d like to ask you all to stay with your own group. Please don’t wander off as the town is quite large and you can get lost easily, so please keep with your group. Thank you.

Regarding photographs—these can only be taken at certain points in the town, so please obey your guide’s instructions. That’s photographs—please watch the restrictions.

Finally, ladies and gentlemen, the coach will leave the coach park at 18:15 — that’s 6:15 — so please be on time. Have an enjoyable tour. Thank you.

Listening Activity No. 8

Can bees see colour? In Professor Fox’s book we’ve found that bees can see blue as a colour. They can see various colours but these insects differ from us as regards their colour-sense in two very interesting ways. Suppose we train bees to come to a red card, and having done so, we put a red card on a table in a garden among a set of different grey cards. In this instance, the bees will mistake red for dark grey or black. They cannot distinguish between the two colours. This means the red is not a colour that bees can see; for them it is just dark grey or black.

That is one strange fact; here is another. A rainbow is red on one edge, and violet on the other. Outside the violet of the rainbow there is another colour which we cannot see at all. This colour is called ultra-violet. Although ultra-violet is invisible, we know that ultra-violet is there because it affects a photographic plate. Now, although we are unable to see ultra-violet light, bees can see it; for them ultra-violet is a colour. Thus bees see a colour which we cannot. This has been proven by training bees to come for syrup placed along a spectrum, or artificial rainbow. The spectrum was created by shining a light through a prism that had been placed on a table in a dark room. In such an experiment the insects can be taught to fly to the ultra-violet part of the spectrum, a part that is, for us, just darkness.

Listening Activity No. 9

Richard: Hi, Linda, did you have a nice holiday?

Linda: Yes. I went to visit my aunt Cathy in Chase Village for a week.

Richard: Oh, you went to Chase Village? I know the place. My sister lives there. How is the traffic there?

Linda: Not too bad. Why do you ask about the traffic?

Richard: You know, I went to the village 3 years ago. There was a lot of traffic in Chase Village.

People drove too fast. I had a very serious accident on Newland Street. I was afraid to drive there, so I always try to avoid that road whenever I visit my sister.

Linda: Things are changing now. You know, people put on their brakes and slow down on Newland Street because they can see a police car there with a police officer in it.

Richard: Oh, it’s good to have a policeman there because there were many accidents that happened on that road. But the police officer wouldn’t be there all the time so some people wouldn’t be too careful about the police. Sometimes they just took a risk.

Linda: You know, a police officer has been working on that road 24 hours a day seven days a week for about two and a half years now.

Richard: Oh, how can a policeman do that without any break?

Linda: No break at all.

Richard: How much does he get paid for the overtime?

Linda: In fact he doesn’t get any pay at all.

Richard: What is his name? He must be a volunteer there but I can’t believe it.

Linda: His name is Officer Springirth. The police department put him to work there.

Richard: What do you mean? Why did the police department put him there?

Linda: In fact, he isn’t a real man. He is a mannequin. Before he was put there, people broke into 16 cars in two months in the village. When the police department put Officer Springirth on that road, there were no more break-ins in that area.

Richard: Fm glad to hear it. I think the police department should put more mannequins on other roads which often cause accidents.

Linda: Ifs a good idea. You know, the crime rate in Chase Village is very low compared to the neighbouring village.

Richard: So the most important effect Officer Springirth has is reducing the crime rate.

Linda: Exactly.

Richard: I will go to visit my sister next month so I will try that road again.

Linda: Yes, please do. You will see the changes.

Listening Activity No. 10

Today Pm going to talk about Tornadoes. The great power of tornadoes is almost unbelievable. The speed of this whirling funnel-shaped wind may be more than 500 miles per hour. It can tear up trees, carry buildings away, and even lift large trucks off the highway. A tornado is like a giant vacuum sweeper that sucks up everything in its path. Experts believe that the most violent force of a tornado is found inside the funnel, where a vacuum is created because of very low air pressure. When this vacuum moves over a building which is filled with air under normal pressure, the difference between the air pressure inside the building and that outside causes the building to explode. The largest tornado on record had a funnel a mile wide.

There are many interesting stories about the strange things that tornadoes have done in the US. About twenty years ago in the state of Indiana, three people were walking into a church just as a tornado struck. Two walked up the steps into the church building and the third person went down into the basement. In that moment, the church building was carried away and the two persons upstairs were killed. The one in the basement was not hurt.

Fortunately, a tornado does not last long, about 20 to 30 minutes on average. Usually it destroys an area about 16 miles long and the great damage that it does in one place lasts only about 30 seconds. Tornadoes normally occur on hot, humid days but not necessarily in the summer. The biggest and most destructive tornado in the US struck on March 18, 1925. Roaring along at a speed of 60 miles per hour, it swept clean a path a mile wide across the states of Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. In its 220-mile-long journey across these three states, the tornado killed 689 people.

More than 200 tornadoes strike in the United States every year. It is not possible to predict when a tornado will strike although the US Weather Bureau gives storm warnings when conditions are right to cause a tornado. The safest place is in some underground, such as a cellar or a basement if a tornado comes.

Listening Activity No. 11

A: Hello. I am a new student here.

B: Hello. What can I do for you?

A: Can you tell me what the Student Union does?

B: Well, we’re part of the National Union of Students, who represents students,interests across the country. We provide services for all students at this college.

A: What kind of services?

B: There are advisors and welfare staff, entertainments, sports clubs, union societies, meetings, campaigns and special interest groups. We offer everything from ballroom dancing to karate, jazz, and political debates.

A: Sounds great. How can you help overseas students?
B: As I’ve said, we have welfare officers who are used to the sort of problems overseas students may have. They know where to get advice on a particular situation, or basically, give whatever help is asked for.

A: I am from the Philippines and I hope I can meet other Filipino students who are here. I play chess and many sports, especially badminton, basketball and wrestling. Please can you tell me how to find out about these things?

B: There is a Filipino society at the college. Regular meetings take place and lots of social activities are organised, such as meals, plays and dances. The Society is made up of Filipino students and other students who have an interest in the Philippines.

A: And what about the sports? Does the Union offer the ones Fm interested in?

B: Yes, we do. There are basketball and wrestling teams. If you want to play in one of the college teams, you have to go along to training sessions and compete for a place. For badminton, you can either go to the badminton club or book a court to play with friends.

A: Is there also a chess club or team?

B: No, Fm afraid not. It may be best for you to put a notice on our notice board to find other players.

A: Will that cost me anything?

B: No. Ifs a free service available to all students, but you have to give your notice to a Union officer first, so that ifs fair for everyone who wants to use the notice board.

A: I only have a room for one month at the moment. I need to find a house or a flat to live in near the college. Are you able to help me with any accommodation problems?

B: There are always rooms available in shared flats or houses on our notice board. The college has some of its own accommodation and you can also apply for these. If you have any problems at all you should talk to one of the Student Union’s welfare officers, who can give specialized advice on accommodation.

A: Thank you for your help.

B: You are welcome.

Listening Activity No. 12

…Now, I’d like to tell you a little bit about the Student Union in this college. All full-time students automatically belong to the Student Union and have voting and membership rights, which means you can vote in Union meetings and in election for the student officers. Part-time students also have access to what the Union has to offer. Further details of this are available from the Student Union offices.

The Union is affiliated to the National Union of Students (NUS), which represents students on a nationwide level. Through the Student Union and its parent body students can take advantage of reduced price travel facilities, Endsleigh insurance, the main student insurance

company, and a wide range of reductions on consumer goods through the Student Discount Card.

The Social Committee of the Student Union organises dances and other entertainments, including the Folk Club, Womb Cinema, and the Third Eye, which caters for a more developed taste in music, theatre, art and poetry.

The Student Union also finances over twenty clubs and societies for a wide range of interests. You can get details of these from the Student Union offices.

Listening Activity No. 13

(Janet has just come down to London for the day. In September, she will be studying at university and she needs to find somewhere to live. Janet goes to an accommodation agency which she knows is offering free advice.)

Man: Hello, can I help you?

Janet: Yes. I’m soon to be studying here in London and I need to find somewhere to live.

Man: OK, have a seat and I will look through some places with you. What type of accommodation are you looking for?

Janet: Well, obviously, I need somewhere quite cheap, but I don’t really know much about the kind of places which are available. Perhaps you can tell me about some.

Man: Right, I’ll start with self-contained flats. Now, these are the most expensive option out of the list I have here. You will usually have to sign a tenancy agreement of some sort and pay a deposit and one month’s advance rent. Although the flats are expensive, You’ll find you have your freedom to do what you want.

Janet: Are there any other kinds of place?

Man: Well, let’s see. If you still want your freedom, you could try bedsitters. With this, you would have to share the kitchen and bathroom.

Janet: Aren’t there any places where I could get meals?

Man: There are lodgings. Here you will receive breakfast and sometimes half board, that is, breakfast and evening meal. You would usually pay your rent weekly to a landlord who lives on the premises. Lodgings are usually more expensive than bedsitters as you receive a meal. There are also hostels, which are very similar in price to lodgings.

Janet: Would I have my own kitchen facilities then?

Man: No, you usually have to share. You could try looking through the local paper for a flat or house share, or why don’t you try the accommodation office in your university?

Janet: I didn’t know there was one.

Man: Yes, and they might get you a room in the halls of residence with other students. You share a kitchen and washing facilities with the other students. Also they may be able to offer you a list of other cheap accommodation in the area. That is your best option.

Janet: Thank you for your help.

Listening Activity No. 14

Just one hour north of London lies the university city of Cambridge, which, for seven hundred years, has been one of the world’s most important centres of learning. The academic vitality of the city and its sheer physical beauty combine to produce the perfect atmosphere in which to study. Like the other students here, you will enjoy privileges which are unique to the Cambridge way of life.

During your free time, you might like to wander along the “Backs” 一the lawns which slope gently down to the River Cam—or try your hand at “punting” on the river itself. Equally relaxing is a cycle ride through the town centre: here you can practise your English in the charming old market place, meet other students in a traditional English pub or pay a visit to one of the city’s world-renowned museums. Afterwards, if you are still feeling energetic, there are facilities for every kind of sport.

Although London is only a short journey away, Cambridge will tempt you with entertainments of its own. You can watch Britain’s finest actors and musicians in performance, see the latest films, or dine in one of Cambridge’s excellent restaurants. In addition, the university social functions provide the perfect chance to make new friends and improve your English at the same time.

Listening Activity No. 15

If you ask people which animals they hate or fear the most, chances are you will hear the following: skunks, bats, snakes and rats. But some of these animals are gaining new respect.

Most people fear the skunks because of their awful smell, for example. But recently people have begun to rethink their ideas about skunks. “Skunks are very useful animals,” says animal researcher Cherry Briggs, ‘‘they catch rats and mice and beetles. They are great for pest control.”

Skunks are very fair. They always warn you before they spray. They raise their tails and stamp their front feet. It5s also good to know that you can spot a skunk before it sees you. We recognise the skunk by its white stripe. But skunks are very nearsighted and can’t see more than three feet ahead. So if you pay attention to the skunk’s warning signs and move away, you probably won’t get sprayed.

Most people would not be too pleased if a skunk moved in under their house, and here is some advice on how to get rid of the creatures. First of all, skunks hate rap music, so if you play loud rap music, skunks generally will move away from your house after a few hours. Also, they love cheese, especially cheddar, so you can just put some cheese a few feet away from your house. When the skunk leaves to get the cheese, block the holes so it can’t get back in. But mostly, skunks just want to be left alone to do their work, which is pest control. Some people who got rid of skunks now actually want them back.

Listening Activity No. 16

Jack: The lecture was interesting. I really enjoyed it.

Gladys: Yes, indeed I agree, but I wonder, are you new here?

Jack: Actually yes. Fm a new student. I enrolled in the M. A. teaching programme last week. Gladys: Oh, really. Well, I don’t want to boast but I was in this programme only two years ago after my degree. I joined the staff of London University.

Jack: I see. Well, then you couldn’t tell me something about this programme, could you? Gladys: Fd be only too glad to. What do you want to know?

Jack: Well, what kind of assessment is there for this particular programme? It’s just that I haven’t taken an exam for quite a long time, so I’m nervous about the course.

Gladys: Oh, take it easy. There’s no need to worry at all. I was nervous too when I first came here until I found that the course assessment emphasises essays and seminar papers. This helped me to gain confidence in my academic work before the final examinations.

Jack: How many papers are required before the finals?

Gladys: Five essays and about six short papers, something like that.

Jack: I see. That doesn’t seem too bad. Did you enjoy the course?

Gladys: Yes, very much. I greatly appreciate the year that I studied here. At first I thought the course would be very theoretical, but in fact it was very practical and relevant to the actual teaching. It proved to be of a great assistance to me in my education career.

Jack: What about the teachers here?

Gladys: Oh, they’re very helpful. Throughout my time as a student the academic staff here were always approachable, encouraging and supportive.

Jack: Well, that makes me feel much better.

Gladys: I’m sure you’ll like studying here. You know, all my time spent in this university was a very happy one. I made many good friends and thoroughly enjoyed the student life on campus. The lecturer today is one of my good friends here.

Jack: Oh, is she? Well, sorry but I have got to leave now. I enjoyed talking with you. Thanks for your help.

Gladys: It’s been nice talking with you too. Good luck.

Listening Activity No. 17

In Western countries, many people have fatty deposits on the inside wall of their arteries. These deposits build up over a number of years, narrowing the arteries. Sometimes the deposits can stimulate the formation of blood clots. If a clot breaks free, it can enter the circulation and sooner or later it will become trapped and block off a blood vessel, possibly causing a heart attack or a stroke.

When researchers looked at the fatty deposits they found they contained huge amounts of a

substance called cholesterol. Everyone has cholesterol in their blood although often the amounts detected in heart disease victims are much greater. So what is the link between what you eat and the cholesterol in your blood? The answer seems to be that the amount and type of fat in your diet are crucial in determining the cholesterol level in your blood.

Food contains two main types of fats. They are called saturated and unsaturated fats. Saturated fats are the baddies, raising blood cholesterol level, while unsaturated fats, called polyunsaturated, will help to lower it.

Polyunsaturated fats also contain lots of essential fatty acids like linoleic acid. As their name suggests, essential fatty acids are vital for health and cannot be made by the body. We should try to reduce the amount of saturated fats we eat and partially replace it with polyunsaturated fats. Polyunsaturated fats are naturally found in some nuts and seeds like sunflower seeds, and in oily fish like mackerel. Margarine and oils which contain a high proportion of polyunsaturated fats are clearly labelled as such. Products which are high in polyunsaturated fats are also low in saturated fats.

Listening Activity No. 18

Today many people who live in large metropolitan areas such as Paris and New York City leave the city in the summer. They go to the mountains or to the seashore to escape the city noise and heat. Over 2,000 years ago, many rich Romans did the same thing. They left the city of Rome in the summer. Many of these wealthy Romans spent their summers in the city of Pompeii. Pompeii was a beautiful city. It was located on the ocean, on the Bay of Naples.

In the year 79 A.D., a young Roman boy who later became a very famous Roman historian was visiting his uncle in Pompeii. The boy’s name was Pliny the Younger. One day Pliny was looking up at the sky when he saw a frightening sight. It was a very large dark cloud. This black cloud rose high into the sky. Rock and ash flew through the air. What Pliny saw was the eruption一the explosion—of the volcano, Vesuvius. The city of Pompeii was at the foot of Mt. Vesuvius.

When the volcano first erupted, many people were able to flee the city and to escape death. In fact, 18,000 people escaped the terrible disaster. Unfortunately, there was not enough time for everyone to escape. More than 2,000 people died. These unlucky people were buried alive under the volcanic ash. The eruption lasted for about 3 days. When the eruption was over, Pompeii was buried under 20 feet of volcanic rock and ash. The city of Pompeii was buried and forgotten for 1,700 years.

In the year 1748, an Italian farmer was digging on his farm. As he was digging, he uncovered a part of a wall of the ancient city of Pompeii. Soon, archaeologists began to excavate—to dig—in the area. As time went by, much of the ancient city of Pompeii was uncovered. Today tourists come from all over the world to see the ruins of the famous city of Pompeii.

Listening Activity No. 19

(Terry, who is from Australia, is talking to his friend, Mary, who came to study history at

Leeds University two years ago. He is asking her about accommodation.)

Terry: … so, do you have to pay the rent weekly or monthly?

Mary: Well, usually monthly,but sometimes weekly. If it’s weekly, then you have to pay it in advance on a fixed day of the week; then if you want to leave, you have to tell your landlady or landlord one week in advance on the day of the week on which you pay your rent.

Terry: Oh, right, so that’s one week’s notice. What about monthly payment?

Mary: Er. . . if you pay your rent monthly, you usually have to give one month’s notice. But if you have furnished accommodation, or you don’t get any meals, then legally you have to give one month’s, even if you’re paying weekly. So it is really important to have a definite arrangement with your landlady at the beginning of your tenancy so you know the exact amount of notice you have to give. The same applies to the landlady if she wants you to leave. She has to give you either a week or a month’s notice, whatever she decides. You usually have to pay a deposit too. If you do, you should make sure that you know exactly what it is for.

Terry: So I have to pay a deposit whenever I move to a new place then.

Mary: Yeah, most landladies ask for a deposit against damage, or in lieu of notice.

Terry: What do you mean?

Mary: You know, if you have to leave without giving the required amount of warning. Or sometimes the deposit is on the key which is returnable when you give it back when you come to leave.

Terry: That sounds fair enough.

Mary: You should really get a receipt for any deposit you pay, because if 11 probably say what it’s for. Oh, and you should also make sure that you have a rent book or some sort of receipt for your rent. If your landlady doesn’t give you one, get one yourself and make sure that she signs it when you pay.

Terry: Why’s that?

Mary: Well, you know, some students have had some trouble with paying their rent. Sometimes the landlady may say that you didn’t pay or something, so it is good to have a rent book to have proof.

Terry: OK, so that’s pretty important.

Mary: Yes,and quite often there are “house regulations” written in the back of the rent book or sometimes displayed somewhere in the house. They may well be a part of your contract of tenancy, so make sure you check them.

Terry: What happens if I want to share a room with a friend? Will that be allowed?
Mary: Well, if you have a single room, it should only be used by one person. If you want to share, you have to ask your landlady’s permission, so it really depends on her.

Terry: Do I have to sign any contract or agreement with the landlady?

Mary: Yeah, sometimes, especially if you’re living in self-contained accommodation. Make sure you read it really carefully,as it’ll be legally binding and you’ll have to pay rent for as long as the agreement says. You can get legal advice if you’re not sure about anything. Oh, and get a copy of it too.

Terry: OK, thanks for your help. It’ll be really useful, I’m sure.

Listening Activity No. 20

Terry: I hear you live in lodgings—how do you get on with your landlady?

Mary: Oh, really well actually.

Terry: Yeah. Fm thinking of taking lodgings. Have you got any tips on living with a landlady or landlord?

Mary: Well, basically I just try to fit in with the customs of household, so right at the beginning you should find out when meals are served and be punctual for them. British people seem to get quite annoyed if you are late for the dinner table.

Terry: What about having friends round?

Mary: Yeah, ifs a good idea to ask your landlady when the most convenient times are, and also for things like having a bath, or receiving telephone calls. If you know you’re going to be late for a meal, or late home at night, you should let her know so she can save your dinner or give you a key.

Terry: Do I have to do any housework?

Mary: No, no, you don’t have to at all, but I’m sure your landlady would be really glad if you kept your part of the house clean and tidy, and made your own bed, things like that. Of course, if you live in your own flat, you’ll have to do the housework yourself.

Terry: What about gas or electricity? Is that included in the rent?

Mary: Sometimes, but usually it’s an extra charge in lodgings. There’ll be a meter which you have to put coins into.

Terry: Oh, I’ve never seen one before. How do you use it?

Mary: Well, they vary quite a bit. You’ll have to ask about how exactly it works. You may have to use some extra blankets. Not all places have central heating and bedrooms can get pretty cold in the winter.

Terry: Oh no, I can’t stand the cold.

Mary: Oh, it’s not too bad. If it’s really cold, you can buy a hot water bottle to warm the bed up before you get in. It would be very expensive to heat your bedroom throughout the night.

Terry: Good idea. I’ll get myself a hot water bottle for winter.

Mary: Yeah, gas and electric heaters shouldn’t really be left on all night anyway unless you have good ventilation. If there is a gas fire in your room, you should really be careful about turning the gas tap off before you go to bed.

Terry: Oh yes, I always check the gas before I go to bed or go out.

Mary: You mustn’t blow out the flame on the gas fire, or turn on the gas without lighting it immediately.

Terry: Yeah, you have to be really careful with gas.

Mary: Also, the voltage in the UK is 240 volts, so you should make sure that if you use any electrical appliances, it’s the right voltage. I used my hairdryer without checking when I first arrived and fused all the lights.

Terry: Til check all my stuff before I leave then. Thanks for the advice.