Every country has their main export, whether it’s oil, petrol, manufactured goods, transport or any other wealth of materials we’ll see jetting from country to country. However, beyond these standard exports, each country also has their fair sure of unusual collections leaving home soil to destinations across the globe and Britain is no exception. From London’s famed black cabs and red telephone boxes, to coastal sea salt and Scottish haggis, here are some of the weirdest things exported from Britain.
We wouldn’t be Britain without the rich red telephone boxes that are rooted so deeply in our history, but you may have noticed that the UK seems to be painfully short of these nostalgic structures. In fact, they’re disappearing from our streets, leaving thousands of Brits with aching hearts – but fear not! You can still find these quintessentially British boxes if you travel abroad. It might seem like quite a journey just for a glimpse at British history, but these red phone boxes have become one of our weirdest but most wonderful exports, with the likes of Israel, Florida, Oklahoma and Antigua all displaying their very own chunk of UK history.
There have been many crossings given the name of ‘London Bridge’ over time, but the bridge in question here was the ‘new’ London Bridge erected in 1831. Given the limited ways to cross the River Thames, this particular bridge was a busy point and it’s use, maintenance and widening saw the bridge starting to sink! As a result, the Common Council of the City of London put the structure on sale in an attempt to, essentially, get rid of it and make room for a replacement. Robert McCulloch, a businessman from America, bought the bridge and had the entire bridge, brick by brick, exported to the US for reconstruction in Lake Havasu City in Arizona.
In theory, the export of a local delicacy isn’t actually all that strange, but the sheer volume in which Haggis is exported from Scotland alone is impressive. In fact, October 201 saw Canada open their doors to the food for the first time in 46 years and as a result, tonnes worth of the stuff has been leaving Scottish soil for the long journey. Granted, they had to make some changes to suit Canadian food standards and regulations – namely using lamb heart and lamb fat as opposed to lamb lungs or beef fat.
Black cabs are another staple of British history, mostly associated with our Capital, but it’s safe to say that the demand for these vehicles abroad is definitely there. Despite Brexit uncertainty leaving vehicle companies unsure of their export futures, Spain, Germany and Saudi Arabia remain some of the country’s most eager to get their hands on this taste of London life.
Being a tiny island in comparison to other leading countries in the world can be a bit of a sore spot for the patriotic amongst us, but being surrounded by the ocean has actually worked out beneficial in terms of exports. With coastline never more than a few hours away, the sea salt we can harvest as a result is high in demand across the globe. The Anglesey Sea Salt Company bring in thousands upon thousands of pounds in turnover alone all from their signature salt crystals. Halen Mon, their leading product, is exported to 22 countries across the world with the potential for more in the future.
The exports that Britain provides to the rest of the globe aren’t all quite as odd as the ones on this list, but we’re certainly proud of our quirky nature. Whether you want to travel to Florida to see one of the exported telephone boxes, or you’re hopping into a black cab overseas, the spread of British culture across the globe is certainly proving to be exciting. What do you think?
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