British Council Celebrates 80 Years of Presence in Greece



The British Council is marking the 80th anniversary of its activity in Greece with a series of events, it announced at a Wednesday ceremony attended by the British ambassador to Greece, Kate Smith.

The British Council is the UK’s international organization for cultural relations and educational opportunities, tasked with promoting the English language and British culture around the world.

The Council opened its first office in Greece in 1939 in Athens. It held its first English-language Cambridge certification exam in the year 1958.

To date, approximately 1.5 million Greek citizens have received language proficiency certifications from the Council, while 2,000 children and adults attend classes there every year.

It is one of the two main pillars of English language education in Greece, along with the Hellenic-American Union.

More than 60,000 British university candidate students and graduates benefit from the institution’s services every year in Greece. Approximately 11,000 Greek men and women move to the UK to study every year.

Apart from being a leading institution in the teaching of the English language, the British Council has developed many different educational programs over the years, and is also the co-organizer of the Athens Science Festival.

At the press conference of Wednesday, Ambassador Kate Smith stressed that the high quality of its services and the innovative methods it implements “established the British Council, very early on, as a leading language center in the conscience of Greeks.”

The Ambassador said the Council not only brings hundreds of thousands of people together with culture, science, the arts and the English language, but it also “creates bonds, opens horizons, and nurtures interest, and love, for Britain.”

With information from AMNA