Expat Voices: Elliot Grove on living in London

Expat Voices: Elliot Grove on living in London

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Canadian Elliot Grove, director of the Raindance Film Festival, reflects on coming to London in the 80s and how it's changed.

Name: Elliot Grove
Nationality: Canadian
City of residence: London
Occupation: Founder and director of the British Independent Film Awards and Raindance Film Festival
Reason for moving to the UK: To get my kids into a decent school.
Lived in the UK since: November 1986

What was your first impression of the UK?

It was big and bold. Some days I loved it, some days I loathed it.

What do you think of the food?
Restaurants in London vie with the best in the world now, but when I came in ’86 they were largely terrible.

What do you think of the shopping in the UK?
The range of clothing goods is fantastic. Other things are OK but electronics are expensive.

What do you appreciate about living in the UK?
The cultural crossroads that is London. Outside London it really is a different country.


Trailer from the 17th Raindance Film Festival (2009), which was banned by the BBFC. The festival runs from the 30 September until 11 October. See the screening schedule here.


What do you find most frustrating about living in the UK?
The expense and the politics.

What puzzles you about the UK and what do you miss since you’ve moved here?
I can’t really think of a zippy answer.

How does the quality of life in the UK compare to the quality of life in other countries that you’ve lived in?
Quality of life is okay – but only if you have the money.

If you could change anything about the UK, what would it be?
The politics.

What advice would you give to a newcomer?
Bring lots and lots of cash


Joining Expat Voices
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