London is a very multi cultural society. While associated very much around the
world with the east end cockney modern London is very different to the
that stereotype. The East End of London was the home of the original cockneys. A
cockney is a particular type of rhyming slang where a phrase such as APPLES AND
PEARS actually means STAIRS, or MINCE PIES means EYES. Originally the cockney
slang came about to prevent outsiders from understanding what was being said.
Today cockney incorporates words that are not part of rhyme but are simply
local slang words such as GEEZER to mean a MAN or BIRD to mean a woman. The East
End of London is more associated today with Asian culture while cockney is more
likely to be heard in North London or South London. Strictly speaking cockneys
are those born within the sound of Bow Bells, these are the bells of St.
Mary-le-Bow (Bow Church) at Cheapside in the City of London. A huge range of
cultures is to be found in London today. A few examples being Jewish culture in
Golders Green and Stamford Hill, Middle Eastern culture around Edgware Road,
Marble Arch and Bayswater, Asian culture in the East End and Southall,
African Culture in Hackney and Dalston and Chinese culture around Chinatown. A
walk around central London is likely to find people from just about all corners
of the world.
London phone numbers all have an 0203, 0207 or a 0208 prefix (020 is the actual
London code). Originally 0207 was assigned to inner London and
0208 assigned to outer London. However since 1999 both 0207 and 0208 prefixes
have been used London wide without geographical significance. Since 2005 the
0203 prefix has also been used.
If you are calling within London to another London phone number then you can
omit the initial 020 part of the number. Also when dialling from outside the UK you do not
dial the initial 0. So from outside the UK an 0207 number would start 207 plus of
course your international prefix code and the UK code of 44.