Chapter 2 – Section 1

© ‘Life in the united kingdom: a journey to citizenship’ material is reproduced under Open Parliament Licence.

Migration to Britain

Many people living in Britain today have their origins in other countries. They can trace their roots to regions throughout the world such as Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and the Caribbean. In the distant past, invaders came to Britain, seized land and stayed. More recently, people come to Britain to find safety, jobs and a better life.

Britain is proud of its tradition of offering safety to people who are escaping persecution and hardship. For example, in the 16 th and 18 th centuries, Huguenots (French Protestants) came to Britain to escape religious persecution in France. In the mid – 1840s there was a terrible famine in Ireland and many Irish people migrated to Britain. Many Irish men became labourers and helped to build canals and railways across Britain.

From 1880 to 1910, a large number of Jewish people came to Britain to escape racist attacks (called ‘pogroms’) in what was then called the Russian Empire and from the countries now called Poland, Ukraine and Belarus.

Migration since 1945

After the Second World War (1939-45), there was a huge task of rebuilding Britain. There were not enough people to do the work, so the British government encouraged workers from Ireland and other parts of Europe to come to the UK to help with the reconstruction. In 1948, people from the West Indies were also invited to come and work.

During the 1950s, there was still a shortage of labour in the UK. The UK encouraged immigration in the 1950s for economic reasons and many industries advertised for workers from overseas. For example, centres were set up in the West Indies to recruit people to drive buses. Textile and engineering firms from the north of England and the Midlands sent agents to India and Pakistan to find workers. For about 25 years, people from the West Indies, India, Pakistan, and later Bangladesh, travelled to work and settle in Britain.

The number of people migrating from these areas fell in the late 1960s because the government passed new laws to restrict immigration to Britain, although immigrants from ‘old’ Commonwealth countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada did not have to face such strict controls. During this time, however, Britain did admit 28,000 people of Indian origin who had been forced to leave Uganda and 22,000 refugees from South East Asia.

In the 1980s the largest immigrant groups came from the United States, Australia, South Africa, and New Zealand. In the early 1990s, groups of people from the former Soviet Union came to Britain looking for a new and safer way of life. Since 1994 there has been a global rise in mass migration for both political and economic reasons.

Continue to Chapter 2 – Section 2

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98 Responses to “Chapter 2 – Section 1”

  1. mohammed says:

    Hi Gais,
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    Once again thanks for your effort… god bless you

  2. 正义的守望者 says:


  3. chris mu says:

    thank u so much i passed today yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!

  4. bisola says:

    hello good morning my name is bisola pls i need help this week i have exam next week

  5. ashraf says:

    i have exam i failed at the first time but theses days are my last days for my visa. there is no second chance. i want pass. i have too. i must too

  6. admin says:

    The exam is not very difficult but requires studying. Read the couple of times and make sure you understand in general. Go through the practice questions. Finally read the book again before the test.
    Good luck.

  7. Gulbubu Martin says:

    I took my test today and failed.
    Using the CD I have been getting marks above 85 %consistantly when set at the hardest level.

    Many of the questions in the test were not phrased as they were in the ‘Citizenship questions and answers for 2009’ book which I was told is the one to use for study?
    This really confused me.
    On top of that, the computer crashed during the test and I was disturbed by a Gentleman in front of me, constantly interupting, by asking the Staff questions.
    Have I been using the correct study guide and was this test conducted correctly or fairly in this instance.
    I have terrible ‘Exam nerves’ problems and todays test conditions have not helped my confidence.

  8. S. D says:

    Many thanks for this web page. It was very helpful and clear. I have passed my test.

    Kind Regards

  9. S Menon says:

    Thank u for posting the subject material. It is helpful. I am preparing for the test. Any tips ????


    S Menon

  10. Alejandro says:

    Regarding a question from the Official Citizenship Test Study Guide (Published 2008, 10th Impression, 2010)

    Page 24, Question 5:

    Since 1979 the number of refugees from South East Asia who have been allowed to settle in the UK is:
    A) Less than 2,500
    B) Between 2,501 and 10,000
    C) Between 10,001 and 25,000
    D) Over 25,000

    The correct answer in the handbook is said to be: D) Over 25,000

    However, in the official Second Edition of the ‘Life in the UK’ study guide (and also above in this page), it reads:
    “During this time, however, Britain did admit 28,000 people of Indian origin who had been forced to leave Uganda and 22,000 refugees from South East Asia.”

    Rather confusing, frustrating.
    Any ideas of which one of these is the real answer?

    Many thanks in advance.

    Alejandro 0.

  11. vu says:

    i passed my test my mainly practiced on this site. if you are here then u dont have to try anywhere else.goodluck

  12. Jenny says:

    Alejandro, thank you for bringing up the question as I would like to know the answer as well. Could Admin help us please?

  13. kronix says:

    i just passes my test thanks to this site but i advice you to read this book aswell as this site. good luck eveyone

  14. jamal says:

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  15. hina says:


    I give a test 2 times but still i am failed i read a book 2nd edition and i use online as well, but when i go for the test the some question is different. I need help what i do? please contact me.
    Many thanks

  16. Napa says:

    Hi Everybody
    I had the test today and I have passed it.
    I want to say thank you very much for this website, it’s really useful. Read it and revise it over and over again I’m sure everybody will be able to pass the test like I did. The questions can be trickly but you have to read it carefully you will be able to answer it.

    Good luck

  17. sakina munye says:

    how did you manage to listen to these chapters using your computer. maybe you can share it with me

  18. Preeti baseta says:

    is these chapters are the course of this test i mean ths life in uk test

  19. riaz says:

    can do with urdu language

  20. admin says:


    I’m afraid the test is not available in foreign languages. After all, the idea is to test your knowledge in English language and life.

  21. sara says:

    Hi guys ,
    if some of you need help and some words or sentences are hard to understand ,
    you could use google translator to translate it to your own language .

    good luck every one.
    thanks admin.

  22. v says:

    interesting..but quite a lot of historical mistakes in the immigration chapter

  23. Mohammad says:

    very good site
    that is helping for my citizenship course

  24. ad says:

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  25. ad says:

    how much is the fee for this exzam

  26. ahmed says:

    plz. tell me which site to apply spouse visa in italy english language course ..

  27. LC says:

    Thanks Passed exam in 3 minutes

  28. Haris says:


    Excellent Website, I prepared for my Test while working in my office & I have passed my test in 1st attempt. And Guess what I finished my test in 4 Mins.

    Thanks Again,


  29. Naveen says:

    Brilliant website
    all the questions were from this site, I think there is no need to use any other material.
    Thanks Hiren


  30. SS says:

    Somthing is missing! years!!

    I compared this section with the book i have for 2011 edition, its not exactly copy paste. Something is missing.

    “During this time, however, Britain did admit 28,000 people of Indian origin who had been forced to leave Uganda and 22,000 refugees from South East Asia.”

    Vietnam? nomention here
    which year indian camed from uganda? not mentioned here.
    please update this section.

  31. Dear Applicants,

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    Well, look no further I am Project Leader of ‘Flying Colors’ a BPP University College initiate trying to help those immigrants struggling with their tests.

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  32. oldbaby2011 says:


  33. Bhavi says:

    Are these chapters based on latest edition? pls admin reply asap .

  34. admin says:

    Yes, they are.

  35. rosie says:

    thanku very much for such an effort, i passed my exam in 1st attempt with flying colours… and all the credit goes to this website.
    it is very helpful. :)

  36. rani says:

    Hi Admin,

    I’m going to attend life in uk test on 27 july friday. but i am realy worried about this- Is this sufficient to pass the test just doing this materials which is produced here…? or need study more..? I have to pass my test in 1st attempt.. otherwise there are no second chance, caused my visa is going to expire soon in september so i must pass it… plz reply me with suggestion….god help me..

  37. rani says:

    Hi guys,
    I had test today and i passed my test in 1st attempt. just let u know guys don’t take it hard, read all chaptter (2-6)carefully and do some parctice, u will be pass.

    yesss…….i’m happy…

  38. Cazza E says:

    Hi guys, I’ve just passed my test today. I wish I had come accross this website sooner… Only found it yesterday. It could have saved me many hours of stressful studying.
    I spent lots of money buying the completr digital edition of LiFe in the UK plus study guide, q&a,etc. One word of advice, there is way too much information in the official material! You can drive yourself insane trying to remember all the dates, percentages, etc. There are only 24 questions in the actual test and THIS website should provide you with enough material to pass the test first time. Read it all, understand it, enjoy it. It’s very simple.
    Thank you for compiling this information. Brilliant work!

  39. Sara O Osman says:

    hi ,admin i would like to know is this materials from the 2nd edition;the last book edition, in which the test will b from. please help me my test will b on 14th of September.

  40. Sara O Osman says:

    hi every one
    I passed my test ,, thanks admin for that great and helpful site

  41. sula says:

    hi,,I m planning to do the test soon. will this site be enough for the test to study? is it up to date. do i have to buy other books other than this?tnx

  42. ND says:

    Hi just stopping by to say thanks. I did all my prep though this website and passed on the 15th of August… And those who are asking whether this site would be sufficient, trust me, it is… I just went through each chapter twice and took all tests online (on the hiren website, google it you will find it) the night before… but make sure you take the tests on that website and all of them…. good luck :)

  43. ND says:

    Just anther quick thing (especially to the married women here) the homeoffice does not state clearly anywhere how picky they are about the proff of id, they sent back loads of girls on the day i was there. Make sure that your name on your paasport (or any other form of id that you book your test with) matches exactly with the proof of residence, e.g. utility bills, bank statements. If your passport is in your maiden name and other docs are in married name, they WILL send you back and not accept any explanations. If your proof of address is in your married name, call your bank or utility provider to change your name, if they refuse to do so, add your maiden name as a ‘middle name’, without the double barrels. I was lucky as i use both my names (maiden and married) on all my documents, i was damn sure that they were going to send me back….. Just make sure that the names are EXACTLY the same…. and when you book the test, book it with military precision, any typos whilst submitting your application, whether DOB or spellings and you will be out… loads of people were being returned and you lose your money too and need to book it again. I felt it was quite unfair, so thought i would let everyone know…

  44. Manohar Gayam says:

    Hi Guys this web site is very helpfull and easy to understand for life in uk exam. me and my wife giving exam on 14th nov 2012. please wish us. Thanks
    Manohar and Deepthi

  45. Rosy says:

    Planning to take test on 1st week of Jan 2013. I heard that book and contents will change and stuffs. Is that true ,where i can get more information from?


  46. Kawai says:

    22,000 refugees, I think it’s 25,000 refugees.

  47. HD says:

    Hi All.

    This website is really helpful, I passed my exam last 2 March in just under 5 minutes taken for the first time.

    A lot of the questions in the actual test are similar to the test on this site. Some are to the letter and some are meant to make you think.
    For one thing, the test questions on the websites or on the books might be phrased differently on the actual test. For example, one question was like, “How many percentage of women of school-age children are in paid work?”. The answer is “almost 75%”. In the book it is stated as “almost three-quarters” which is the same as 75%. This means that if you don’t have a good level of command/understanding of the English language, you might struggle with the exam. So if you had tried the test and failed, the best way is to get the ESOL course first to increase your level of English reading comprehension. This will massively improve your chance of passing.

    When booking for the test, make sure that you have the correct type of document of verification. During my test, 1 lady was refused to take the test because she selected “Travel Documents” instead of “Passport”.

    When studying/reviewing, on the last 3 days prior to your test,
    – read the chapters again so it will be fresh in your mind.
    – do several sets of practice tests as questions are meant to be random.

    When taking the test,
    – make sure that you are 15 minutes or earlier so you are settled
    – review your answers before submitting and finishing the test

    On the 25th March, test will be based on the 3rd edition (2013 edition).

    Good luck to all future test takers.

  48. anis says:

    its translate to every chapter in bangla language

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