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Where is the "first" floor in British buildings?

Where is the "first" floor in British buildings?

Old Mar 5th, 2007, 07:17 PM
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Where is the "first" floor in British buildings?

I have corresponded with a London B&B that I have a reservation in for a one week stay in two weeks. I have specified that I want a quiet room. They relpied that they have set aside a"first" floor room for us. Is the "first" floor on the same level as the entry and lobby or where might it be? I have heard that this B&B has rooms off the lobby and I do not want to be assigned there. I have written them to tell them this.
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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 07:34 PM
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In the UK the floors are Ground, 1st (1 floor up), 2nd (2nd floor up) and so on. So 1st floor is up one level from the ground floor.
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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 07:37 PM
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And what a clever idea it is to label them that way. If you go up three flights of stairs you're on the third floor. Sounds logical, right? But here in the US, go up three flights of stairs and you're on the fourth floor. That makes no sense at all.
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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 07:40 PM
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Logical if you don't consider the "ground" floor to be a floor. Very few buildings in either country are actually "the ground" inside. You enter on the first, go up to the second, and so forth. Perfectly rational and right.
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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 07:43 PM
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"Very few buildings in either country are actually "the ground" inside. You enter on the first . . . " Huh? Most bldgs -- you walk in off the pavement (sidewalk) and are on the Ground floor.
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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 08:06 PM
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That's funny. Two steps up to my front door, but that is the ground floor. Since my lot slopes, my family room, which is half a flight of stairs down, is also on the ground floor.

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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 11:16 PM
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In Georgian houses especially the ground floor is half a floor or more higher than the local terrain with a basement level not much lower than the street level.

Then there are maisonettes, colony & Tyneside flats which may have multiple floors none of which are at ground level
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Old Mar 5th, 2007, 11:19 PM
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Very true. Friends live in a Georgian place with that kind of configuration.
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 12:26 AM
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Patrick when you go up "three flights of stairs" you add the "three" to the "1" for the first floor and you get four.
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 02:52 AM
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Just to confuse the issue, you might well need (depending on the size of the stairwell) more than one flight of stairs to go up one floor....
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 02:54 AM
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And there may be another floor between ground & 1st floor
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 03:57 AM
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..or between ground floor and basement - my friend's dining room is in the semi-basement, her kitchen in the basement, which in turn is really the ground floor if you approacjh the house from that side (sloping site again)Jings!
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 03:58 AM
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Dukey, I know how you have to count them in the US. I just say it still makes sense that if you go up three flights of stairs you'd be on the third floor, not the fourth. I just like their system better.

And their system is really no different than they way we count many things. If you get in your car and drive a mile you reach the FIRST mile marker. You haven't reached the FIRST mile when you start your car.

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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 04:09 AM
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This reminds me about the new Millennium
controversy when people got very het up about celebrating on 1st January 2000 when the Millennium actually started in 2001
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 04:32 AM
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Zero is a number. Long ago western mathematicians did not think that, but the recognition that it was (by Arab mathematicians) enabled great progress.

It's a similar blind spot that caused many people to reckon the year 2000 as the first year of the new millennium, and the entry-level floor of a building as the first floor.

Americans: what is the basement? Is it level 0 or level -1?
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 04:41 AM
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Every year - every moment, come to that - is the start of a new millennium.

</wisdom>
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Old Mar 6th, 2007, 08:30 AM
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Oh yea. Thinking of counting the "European" way, we don't say that a newborn is one year old. He has to live a full year before we say that. Just like you should have to go up a flight of stairs before you get to the FIRST floor.
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