How is Southwark pronounced?

How is Southwark pronounced?

London Bridge is falling down. With English subtitles

Last week I was in a queue at the tube station and the guy in front of me was trying to buy a ticket for Southwark, but he was getting more and more nervous. The problem was that he kept saying “South-wark” and the customer assistant had no idea which station he was asking, “I don’t know where it is, mate.”

You see, the ‘south’ in Southwark is not pronounced the way we would normally say ‘south’; instead, he says ‘suhth’ (using the same vowel sound that is in the word ‘up’); the ‘w’ in ‘wark’ is silent and since this second syllable is weak, he uses the schwa instead of taking a long ‘ar’ sound as in ‘car’. So how should the guy have said where he was going? Suh-thuk would have gotten him his ticket much faster, or / ˈsʌðək / for those of you familiar with phonemic writing.

The relationship between the spelling and sound of English words is quite complex in general, but that of place names in particular can be mind-boggling. To save you time and hassle at the locker, we’ve compiled a list of some of the subway stops whose pronunciation you may struggle with:

London’s Big Ben gives its final chimes.

Moving to the suburbs, or ‘burbs’ /ˈbɜːbz/, might give you more space, but it won’t solve pronunciation problems. Starting with the silent h’s in Balham /ˈbæləm/, Clapham /ˈklæpəm/, Fulham /ˈfʊləm/, and Vauxhall /ˈvɒksɔːɫ/, with the ‘s’ in , Lewisham /ˈluːɪʃəm/, and yes pronounced in West Ham /ˈwest ˈhæm/, East Ham /ˈiːst ˈhæm/, and . . .  Ham /ˈhæm/.    In the West you’ll find such delights as Wimbledon /ˈwɪmbɫdən/, Chiswick /ˈtʃɪzɪk/ and Ruislip /ˈraɪslɪp/, while in the East Rotherhithe /ˈrɒðəraɪð/,  Woolwich /ˈwʊlɪtʃ/, Surrey Quays /ˈsʌri ˈkiːz/ and Greenwich /ˈgrenɪtʃ/ or barking mad in Barking /ˈbɑːkɪŋ/.

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But you will hear all sorts of accents in London. Very generally speaking the West is posh, the East is cockney, and everywhere else is in between, ranging from Estuary Estuary /ˈestʃəri/ (a bit London) to RP /ˈɑː ˈpiː/ (neutral – What they used to sound like on the BBC). At Buckingham Palace /ˈbʌkɪŋəm ˈpælɪs/ is the Queen – Queen, We all know what she sounds like. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Kahn works at City Hall – City Hall /sɪti hɔːːɫ/, has a modern, neutral accent with a London twist. While at 10 and 11 Downing Street /ˈdaʊnɪŋ striːt/, our prime minister and chancellor sound … elegant, went to Eton /iːtən/.

Big Ben, London Eye, Westminster, Tower Bridge

If you eat Pho in Greater London you will see that in most of its restaurants they will serve lemon, lime, bean sprouts and pepper in a separate dish so that the diner can marinate the soup to taste.

It is a city in the United Kingdom. Its flag represents all the history it has traveled through to the present day. Its area is approximately 71 km. 14% of the tourists said that it is a charming city.

It is a city of the United Kingdom. Its flag represents all the history it has travelled through to the present day. Its area is approximately 71 km. 14% of the tourists said that it is a charming city.

Palace and Abbey of Westminster and St. Margaret’s Church

This area of London has been known for its food market since the 11th century. Today, stallholders sell fruits and vegetables, meats, dairy, oils and spices, among other products, produced in the United Kingdom and other countries. Everything comes from socially responsible sources. There are also cafes, restaurants and pubs.

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If you go to Borough Market at lunchtime, as I did, you will find a wide variety of food, from Scotch eggs and freshly baked bread to German sausages and fish and chips (the national dish). It’s hard to choose with all those tempting aromas! I recommend walking leisurely among the stalls to see what’s there and what you’re in the mood for.

In its beginnings, Hay’s Galleria functioned as an enclosed dock and was called Hay’s Wharf. Here, ships from all over the world, especially clipper ships carrying tea from India and China, unloaded their cargoes. Over time, the wharf fell out of use and deteriorated. In the 1980s it was recycled: the old warehouses were converted into offices and a glass and metal roof was installed. The fountain in the middle has a bronze sculpture representing the shipping tradition of the place.

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