Britain is a fantastic place to live: a modern, thriving society with a long and illustrious history. Our people have been at the heart of the world's political, scientific, industrial and cultural development. We are proud of our record of welcoming new migrants who will add to the diversity and dynamism of our national life.
Appling to become a permanent resident or citizen of the UK is an important decision and commitment. You will be agreeing to accept responsibilities which go with permanent residence and to respect the laws, values and traditions of the UK. Good citizens are an asset to the UK. We welcome those seeking to make a positive contribution to our society.
Passing the Life in the UK test is part of demonstrating that you are ready to become a permanent migrant to the UK. This handbook is designed to support you in your preparation. It will help you to integrate into society and play a full role in your local community. It will also help ensure that you have a broad general knowledge of the culture, laws and history of the UK.
British society is founded on fundamental values and principles which all those living in the UK should respect and support. These values are reflected in the responsibilities, rights and privileges of being a British citizen or permanent resident of the UK. They are based on history and traditions and are protected by law, customs and expectations. There is no place in British society for extremism or intolerance.
The fundamental principles of British life include:
- the rule of law
- individual liberty
- tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
- participation in community life
As part of the citizenship ceremony, new citizens pledge to uphold these values. The pledge is:
'I will give my loyalty to the United Kingdom and respect its rights and freedoms. I will uphold its democratic values. I will observe its laws faithfully and fulfil my duties and obligations as a British citizen.'
Flowing from the fundamental principles are responsibilities and freedoms which are shared by all those living in the UK and which we expect all residents to respect.
If you wish to be a permanent resident or citizen of the UK, you should:
- respect and obey the law
- respect the rights of others, including their right to their own opinions
- treat others with fairness
- look after yourself and your family
- look after the area in which you live and the environment
In return, the UK offers:
- freedom of belief and religion
- freedom of speech
- freedom from unfair discrimination
- a right to a fair trial
- a right to join in the election of a government
This text is taken from Life in the United Kingdom, a Guide for New Residents, 3rd edition, Page 7
© Crown Copyright 2013
▶Task 1 - comprehension
▶Task 2 - vocabulary
▶Task 3 - categorising
▶Life in the UK test - make sure you know
Before you take the Life in the UK test, make sure you know:
- The fundamental principles of British life
- The responsibilities and freedoms which come with permanent residence
More like this
Think of another country you know well.
- Are its values and principles the same as the UK's?
- Are there any differences?
Why not leave a comment below? We’d love to hear from you!
You can find out more about the Life in the UK test, and about applying for British Citizenship here: