Brits drink too much, are ignorant and intolerant, say foreign visitors

Foreigners don't like UK weather or food either

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British people drink too much and are intolerant, say foreign visitorsGetty

Britons drink too much, have terrible eating habits and are generally ignorant, according to a survey of overseas visitors.

Foreigners are none too keen on UK weather or food either, the poll carried out for the British Council found.

Asked for their views on people in the UK, those surveyed put drinking too much as the worst characteristic, followed by bad eating habits, ignorance of other cultures and being too nationalistic and intolerant toward people from other countries.

On the plus side, 46 per cent put politeness and good manners as the best characteristic, while 37 per cent reckoned Britons are well educated and skilled, 31% saw them as friendly, 27% said they respected the rule of law and 25 per cent said they had a good sense of humour. Words:PA

The poll was based on responses by more than 5,000 people aged 18-34 in Brazil, China, Germany, India and the USA.

When asked to name a person they were interested in and associate with contemporary UK arts and culture, the overseas young people most commonly came up William Shakespeare, followed by the Queen and David Beckham.

Culture and history were seen as the UK's most attractive features, with weather and food its least.

A wider survey that included young adults in Britain as well as the other five countries showed that, in terms of overall "attractiveness", the UK was ranked second only to the USA, sharing joint second place with Australia.

With respondents not permitted to rate their own country, France was in fourth place and Italy fifth.

British Council strategy director John Worne said: "This research confirms culture and education are among the UK's biggest assets in attracting people from important countries to the UK's future.

"But, while there's a lot to be proud of, some stereotypes still colour the way that we're viewed overseas."


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