When do our clients require a translator and when do they need an interpreter?  Most people ask for a translator, however, the difference is quite simple: translators work with a written word and interpreters deal with a spoken word, face-to-face or over the phone. Both mean changing a message from one language into another completely and accurately. When interpreting though, there is an additional requirement to convey the same tone and mood. Being unbiased and independent interpreters doesn’t mean we have to act as robots: customers expect us to be able to express the nuances of native speech in the best way possible.

Translators work with written documents, such as correspondence, transcripts, contracts etc., and have all of the resources available: dictionaries, online glossaries and translation memories with terminology databases.

The only memory interpreters can rely on is their own. In simultaneous interpreting when no pauses are made, the interpreter is catching up all the time with a delay of just few seconds. This is a very skilled job as while listening to the speaker in one language, interpreters have to instantly convert the message into another language and pronounce it while still listening to the flow of speech. Can you ignore your own voice saying one thing in one language, catching up with a flow of speech in another language at the same time? Professionals can.

In consecutive interpreting, where stops are allowed, a note pad is an interpreter’s good friend.

Whether you need a translator or an interpreter, we are able to put you in touch with a reliable professional. Just let us know the date, time and type of job you need a language specialist for by using this form, and we will get back to you.


Private Eye, N 1383, 9th - 22nd January 2015, p. 32

Private Eye N 1383

Copyright: Private Eye

For reference see full report of quality arrangements and government response


Desperate/last minute call by a Welsh County (Family) Court today to appear tomorrow and Friday. Capita, having had THREE months' notice, failed to supply an intepreter. It only became apparent today, on the first day of the hearing. The Judge was furious and fed up; gave authorisation to retain services of NRPSI outside the Framework Agreement.

I accepted on the National Agreement Rates/Terms & Conditions.

Nice job, Crapita!


If you go to see a doctor in France, Germany and Poland, nobody will provide you with an interpreter. I was talking to my sister about this the other day. 

She lives in Italy and says if you go to a doctor there and you speak the language, fine. If not, well too bad. You communicate with your hands. The situation in Britain regarding translators must be unique.


I have been a Polish translator in England since 2008. When I started it was really, really busy. I would have three cases a day. I was working day and night. I have less work now, but I think that’s mainly because there are so many more interpreters.

In some ways it is surprising that more Poles than any other nationals require interpreters here. Most Polish nationals – specially the younger generation – learn English at college. 


Some hospitals or GP surgeries use telephone interpreters but from my experience it doesn’t really work. Take NHS cases. Patients sometimes want you to be there when they are given local anaesthetic. I’m next to the patient and the doctor with the scalpel, so sometimes you see things that could make you faint.


For me the most exciting projects are crown courts. A year ago we did quite a big murder trial in Carlisle – it lasted for a month and a half, lots of defendants. We had all those reports, pathologists’ reports, so this was very demanding stuff.


A Latvian man spent four weeks in prison for an offence that should normally have carried a community punishment, because of problems with court interpreters in Shropshire, a lawyer has said.

Rolands Etjantens, 25, pleaded guilty on December 8 to an offence of common assault on his ex-partner, but was remanded in custody by magistrates while he waited to be assessed by the probation service to see if he was suitable for community punishment.

For Etjantens, Mr Chris Grainger said that magistrates on December 8 had feared the defendant would return to the home of the victim, who was herself under a curfew order for another offence and had refused to grant him bail.

However, when Etjantens, who was of previous good character with no previous offences, reappeared in Telford magistrates on Wednesday the probation service had failed to carry out a report because they could not find an interpreter.