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Old 13.01.2020, 18:07
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CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

Dear all
I would like to go to England for two weeks, just before before i take the Proficiency exam.
There are several options of cities to visit, ESL suggested schools in London, Oxford or Cambridge or Malta. The ESL agent straight-out told me that I am too old (33) for Malta in July , so England it is.

Can someone give some advice on where to go? I'll try and provide some relevant information:

-Costs aren't that important, employer pays school, rent and travel.
-I am more interested in sports, food and pub culture than outdoor events
- The percentage of german speaking students (which should be as small as possible) is roughly the same in those three schools.
- I will be staying at a host family (Would lead to some 45 min commute when I go to London)
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Old 13.01.2020, 19:30
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

I'd opt for London, but that's because I know that place better. So hopping and fun, you befriend people in no time, there's a lot going on. If the commute is long, read, do your homework (like I do)..or talk to fellow passengers?
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Old 13.01.2020, 20:19
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

I would go for either Oxford or Cambridge personally.
Both are fantastic towns and have lots going on.
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Old 17.01.2020, 07:23
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

Go to Edinburgh!


http://www.edinburghschoolofenglish.com/
Great pubs, great outdoors. Not as hectic as London, but loads to do.
I can recommend the school, but double check they can offer a specific CPE course. If they can't I'd suggest going into the C2 level class, and get the company to stump up for 5 extra 90 min tutorials a week (1 to 1 exam practice).
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Old 20.01.2020, 10:57
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

Thank you all for your feedback and I will have a look at edinburgh as well. I'll have to deal with scottish accents anyway

The employer pays already for my CPE course here in Basel, asking for even more would be a bit too much I think.
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Old 20.01.2020, 11:56
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

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Thank you all for your feedback and I will have a look at edinburgh as well. I'll have to deal with scottish accents anyway

The employer pays already for my CPE course here in Basel, asking for even more would be a bit too much I think.
Two weeks is very short and you'll be at school for much of it. Finding a school that offers CPE courses might restrict you from staying in some cities. Personally, in your situation, I'd search for a good school, perhaps starting in London first, as London has the most to offer historically.

However, any of those other cities you mentioned are wonderful as well.

Malta, as fascinating of an island as it is, isn't necessarily the best place to learn English as the locals don't really speak it. I've heard more negative accounts of Malta schools than positive.
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Old 20.01.2020, 20:30
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

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Two weeks is very short and you'll be at school for much of it. Finding a school that offers CPE courses might restrict you from staying in some cities. Personally, in your situation, I'd search for a good school, perhaps starting in London first, as London has the most to offer historically.
Historically in terms of CPE or generally?

If you want historic then Oxford or Cambridge are the way to go. Both gorgeous, compact and teeming with life.
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Old 20.01.2020, 23:47
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Re: CPE London, Oxford or Cambridge

I'd 100% choose Oxford every day of the week.

I like Cambridge too, but it always feels a bit remote to me, with fewer good transport links to neighbouring towns. You often have to get the train into London and back out again, or spend hours on a bus for what would be a 20-30mins trip in a car.

I was 36 the first time I really visited Oxford for a boozy long weekend with 16 of my mates. We went down for the 2001 Radiohead homecoming gig in Victoria Park. We stayed in Lincoln College student digs above The Mitre pub on the corner of Turn St and High St. By the final day, my mates were all checking out apartment and house prices because the city just has such a good vibe. We particularly liked the Zodiac club which is now the O2 Academy Oxford gig venue, and The Head of the River for a long Sunday lunch https://www.headoftheriveroxford.co.uk/

Visited many times since then, and a favourite day would begin with a walk through the grounds of Magdalen College, first drink in The Mitre then a slow pub crawl up High Street, north to the legendary Eagle & Child where the Oxford Inklings used to meet, across the road to the Lamb & Flag, down to St Aldate's Tavern, keep going to The Head of the River, then back up to The Bear (which is tiny).

If you base yourself in Oxford, you can catch the X5 coach to visit Cambridge for a day, but even that is the best part of 4hrs each way. Stratford-upon-Avon is worth a visit, and Oxford's on the edge of the Cotswolds.
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