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  • Hello. This is 6 Minute English from 

  • BBC Learning English. I’m Neil.

  • And I’m Sam.

  • People in the UK are enjoying a four-day holiday as part of the celebrations

  • for Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee.

  • jubilee celebrates the anniversary of a special event, and the word is mostly

  • associated with the Royal Family. In 2022, Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her

  • Platinum Jubilee, commemorating 70 years since she became Queen in 1952.

  • People are doing all kinds of things to celebrate, from large events at

  • Buckingham Palace and St Paul’s Cathedral, to smaller street parties in towns

  • and cities up and down the country, and abroad. In this programme, we look at

  • the Platinum Jubilee in an unusual way, by hearing about a cake competition

  • to make the official jubilee cake - the Platinum Pudding. And, as usual,

  • well be learning some related vocabulary as well.

  • This isn’t the first celebration of Queen Elizabeth’s reign

  • the period of time when a monarch rules a country. In 1977, the Queen

  • celebrated her Silver Jubilee, marking 25 years as queen, followed by her Golden

  • Jubilee in 2002, and her Diamond Jubilee in 2012.

  • But what’s so special about this year’s Platinum Jubilee is that Queen Elizabeth II

  • is the first British monarch ever to spend 70 years on the throne.

  • And I have a question about it, Sam.

  • Queen Elizabeth II is Britain’s longest-ever reigning monarch,

  • but who was the previous longest-reigning before her?

  • Was it: a) Henry VIII?

  • b) Elizabeth I?

  • or c) Queen Victoria?

  • I know it’s c) Queen Victoria.

  • OK. I’ll reveal the answer at the end of the programme. As the first monarch  

  • ever to have a platinum jubilee, many celebrations are being planned for the Queen

  • These include an official birthday parade, Trooping 

  • the Colour, which ends with jet planes flying over Buckingham Palace,  

  • and the Platinum Pageant - a live concert in front of the palace,  

  • featuring music and dancing, puppets of the Queen’s  

  • favourite pets - her corgi dogs - and a performance by Ed Sheeran

  • And that’s just in London. All across the UK street parties 

  • are being held for people to eat and drink with friends 

  • and neighbours. There’s a tradition of inventing a new 

  • food dish to commemorate jubilees, going all the way 

  • back to the Victoria sponge, a cake named after Queen 

  • Victoria. This year a competition was held to find a new 

  • dish to become the official pudding of the jubilee. Here’s 

  • BBC reporter, Daniella Relph, to explain more.

  • First, there was a Victoria sponge, then coronation chicken, now we have a

  • Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Pudding. The winning lemon Swiss roll

  • and amaretti trifle is a twist on a traditional triflewith layers of Swiss roll

  • jelly, custard, mandarinsamaretti biscuits and cream

  • In 1953, a mix of chicken and curry cream sauce called

  • coronation chicken, was invented to celebrate Queen 

  • Elizabeth’s coronation – the ceremony at which she was made queen

  • This year, competition winner, Jemma Melvin, has invented a lemon and Swiss roll  

  • amaretti trifle as the official jubilee cakeTrifle is  

  • a sweet, cold pudding made of three layers – a  

  • layer of fruit and cake, a layer of custard, and a top layer of cream

  • Jemma’s jubilee trifle is a twist on a traditional trifle

  • When talking about foodpeople use the phrase a twist 

  • on something to describenew variation of a traditional 

  • recipe, using different, exciting ingredients.

  • Jemma learned her winning recipe from her grandmothers. She wants her trifle to  

  • bethe people’s pudding”, something to be enjoyed by everyone. Here is  

  • Jemma Melvin describing how she felt to discover  

  • her trifle had been chosen as the official Platinum Pudding

  • I cannot believe it! Everything that I was up against 

  • was just the most beautiful desserts and pudding with beautiful stories.... this  

  • quite humble trifle has won is a bit surreal

  • Jemma describes her trifle as humble – modest, and not proud.  

  • Although the pudding contains ingredients like amaretti biscuits and cream,

  • which are good enough for a queen, she wanted to base it on a humble 

  • trifle, something everyone around the country can make

  • Enjoying a bowl of Jemma’s Platinum Pudding sounds like a great way for

  • some to celebrate the Queen’s seventy-year reign.

  • Which reminds me of your question, Neil. We know Elizabeth II has reigned for

  • 70 years, but who was the second longest-serving monarch?

  • I said it was c) Queen Victoria.

  • I’m glad you were so sure, because you were correct.

  • Victoria was queen for almost 64 years which is a long time, but not as long

  • as Elizabeth.

  • OK, let’s recap the vocabulary from this programme about the Queen’s jubilee

  • – a celebration of the anniversary of a special event, usually involving

  • the Royal Family.

  • A king or queen’s reign means the period of time they rule a country.

  • coronation is the ceremony at which someone is made monarch

  • the king or queen.

  • Trifle is a popular pudding made of a layer of fruit and cake, a layer of

  • custardand a top layer of cream.

  • If you say a food dish is a twist on something, you mean it’s a variation of

  • traditional recipe, using new and exciting ingredients.

  • And finally, someone who is humble is modest, and not proud.

  • If you were inspired by this recipe, why not try making it.

  • But that’s all from us. Goodbye for now.

  • Goodbye!

  • Hello. This is 6 Minute English from BBC Learning English. I’m Sam

  • And I’m Neil.

  • Have you ever played the game, Cluedo, Neil? The idea is that the person

  • playing detective discovers who the murderer is, where the crime took place,

  • and which weapon was used.

  • The last time I played Cluedo it was Professor Plum, in the library, with the dagger!

  • Cluedo is based on a very popular type of bookthe murder mystery,

  • sometimes called a whodunnit – a story about a murder which doesn't reveal 

  • who the murderer is until the end.

  • The queen of murder mysteries is a British writer who was born in 1890.

  • Her books are read all over the world and have been translated  into

  • a 103 different languages. Her name is Agatha Christie.

  • To date over 2 billion copies of her crime novels have been sold worldwide,

  • making her the best-selling novelist of all timeand the subject of this programme

  • Perhaps her best-known story isMurder on the Orient 

  • Express’, a whodunnit featuring her most famous detective, Hercule Poirot,

  • who starred in 33 of Agatha Christie’s books

  • More about that later but as usual I have a quiz question 

  • for you, Neil.

  • Poirot may be Agatha Christie’s most famous detective, but he isn’t her only one

  • so who is Agatha Christie’s other fictional detective?

  • Is it:

  • a) Hetty Wainthropp?

  • b) Jessica Fletcher? or,

  • c) Miss Marple?

  • I’ll guess it’s a) Hetty Wainthropp.

  • OK, Neil. I’ll reveal the answer at the end of the programme.

  • As mentioned, one of Agatha Christie’s most famous books is

  • Murder on the Orient Express’. The story takes place

  • on a train travelling from Istanbul in Turkey to Calais in northern France.

  • Listen as writer and Agatha Christie superfan, Harriet Gilbert,

  • summarises the story for BBC World Service programme, World Book Club.

  • Poirot is on the train, heading back home to England from 

  • Syria, when two unconnected events take place. In

  • snowstorm in Croatia, the train comes grinding to a halt  

  • and in one of the sleeping berths, a passenger is murdered

  • Since it’s impossible for anyone to have reached the isolated 

  • snow-trapped train or to have escaped from it without 

  • leaving telltale footsteps in the snow,  

  • the killer can only be one of the dozen people sharing  

  • Poirot’s coach. Yet as he starts to investigate it  

  • seems that each of them has an alibi for the time of the murder.  

  • Impossible? Well, Poirot’s certainly perplexed… 

  • During a snowstorm, the express train comes to a grinding halt

  • it slows down until it stops altogether. Then, someone is murdered

  • The murderer can’t have escaped without leaving telltale footprints in the snow.

  • When something is described as telltale, it reveals information which allows 

  • a secret to be uncoveredFor example, lipstick on your 

  • husband’s shirt could betelltale sign he’s having an affair

  • The murder victim is found in bed stabbed with a knife

  • Poirot begins to investigatebut as he questions the 

  • train passengers one by one, it seems that everyone 

  • has an alibi - proof that they were somewhere else when a crime was committed

  • Naturally, this leaves the Belgian detective perplexed,  

  • or confused because something is difficult to understand 

  • or solve.

  • I won’t spoil the story by telling you what happens next, Neil.  

  • But let’s just say that, as usual, Poirot uncovers the murderer using his

  • incredible powers of observation.

  • In her stories, Agatha Christie describes Hercule Poirot as a very strange

  • or eccentric man.

  • The author, Sophie Hannah, has written several new Poirot stories based on the

  • characters invented by Agatha Christie before her death in 1976.

  • Here she is describing more of Hercule Poirot’s  

  • strange characteristics to BBC World Service Programme,

  • World Book Club

  • There’s the sort of the outward things,  

  • his appearance which is very striking and very unusual,  

  • and his sort of, I suppose foibles is the best thing to call them,  

  • he likes neatness, he likes order,  

  • he approaches thing very methodically, he’s very proud of his

  • luxuriant moustaches, you know, all of that.

  • Sophie calls Poirot’s unusual behaviour his foibles - 

  • habits or characteristics which are considered strange 

  • or foolish but which harm no-one

  • Yes, unlike the fictional murderers he uncovers, Poirot’s  

  • foibles do no harm, but it makes me wonder if Agatha 

  • Christie’s other famous detective also had unusual habits

  • Well, first youll have to reveal the answer to your quiz question

  • Sam. You asked me for the name of Agatha Christie’s other 

  • famous detective, and I guessed