Glossary of British Words and Slang

  • A4 / A 30 /M25 – M is a motorway, equivalent to an interstate, A is a major highway
  • A Levels – Advanced Level General Certificate of Education, a course of study that is generally required for British high school students hoping to apply to college
  • A-Z – The London street map book – can also by a different A-Z that has maps for the whole of Britain
  • Bacon Butties – Bacon sandwich
  • Ball Bearing Gun – BB gun
  • Baps – A soft roll
  • Bedsit – A type of rental accommodation consisting of a single room and a shared bathroom
  • Bitter – British style beer
  • Blag – Lie, con, scam
  • Bodge – to make a mess of something or botch it up
  • Bollocking – Chewing out, lecturing, reprimanding
  • Boot – Trunk of a car
  • Bottled it – Lost courage, chickened out
  • Breeker – I honestly have no idea what this means
  • Bricking it – Scared, Terrified
  • Bung – A plug
  • Bursaries – A monetary award from the government to help pay for higher education
  • Butters – ugly, useless
  • Carriageway – Road way
  • Comprehensive School – A state run school that takes anyone who wants to go, doesn’t accept on the basis of tests or academic ability
  • Cooker – Stove
  • Dodgy – Shady, sketchy, tricky, unreliable
  • Doss down – Sleep in a convenient place
  • Dumars – A block of wood with a hooked nail through it used for climbing chain link fences
  • Electric hob – An electric stove
  • Fag – Cigarette
  • Fancy – Like, as in a boyfriend or girlfriend
  • Fit – Pretty, handsome, hot
  • Flash – Gaudy or ostentatious
  • Fleet Street – An area of London long associated with newspapers and journalism
  • Flyover – Highway overpass
  • Football – Soccer
  • GCSEs – Another term for A levels (see above)
  • Good nick – To be in good condition
  • Hared – ran, moved quickly
  • Head Teacher – Principal
  • Hob – The flat top of a stove, or a separate flat surface that contains a hotplate or burner
  • Hod – a long-handled box for carrying bricks or mortar
  • Hostel – Group home, a place for orphaned children or those who’ve been removed from their parents
  • Kick seven shades out of (someone) – To beat up
  • Kidult – A middle-aged person you participates in youth culture and activities
  • Lay-by – A paved area next to a main road where cars can stop
  • London Orbital – The M25, the ring road around London
  • Loo – Bathroom
  • Lorry – Truck
  • Minted up – Rich, a lot of cash
  • MOT – Ministry of Transport
  • Need a gypsy’s – Best as I could tell, this meant something like ‘need a piss’
  • Negged – Usually means to get rejected or denied access, but in this case I think he means killed
  • Oz – Australia
  • Pasties – A filled pastry.  It can have has meat, sausage, cheese and onion or similar fillings
  • Piss-up – Heavy drinking
  • Posh – Elegant, fashionable
  • Pound – British money equivalent to  1 ½ to 2 dollars
  • Pram – Stroller
  • Prat – Idiot
  • Public School – A private school, with entrance requirements and tuition.   One famous example might be Eton.
  • Quid – A pound, British money equivalent to  1 ½ to 2 dollars
  • Roadside Burger Bar – A van or food truck that sets up in rest areas or lay-bys (see above) on the highway
  • Rumbled – To be discovered, especially to be caught in the act of a crime
  • Runaround – A car used mostly for local trips, just for going to the store and small errands
  • Secateurs – Pruning shears for cutting plants
  • Shattered – Exhausted
  • Skelm – a rogue or scamp, used in South Africa to mean a little shit
  • Slotted – Hurt, Stabbed, Shot
  • Snog – Make out
  • Take the Mick Out of Someone – To tease or make fun of someone
  • Telly – TV
  • Test match at Lords – This refers to cricket, a popular sport in Britain that has some similarities to baseball.  A test match is a game between two national teams, and Lords is a stadium that is often referred to as the home of cricket.
  • Tosser – A jerk
  • Tube Station – Subway station
  • Tube train – Subway train
  • WH Smiths – A chain store that sells, books, magazines, greeting cards, candy, soft drinks, pens, and the like