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Alejandro English Teacher

Passive voice exercises

1) Complete the paragraph. Put in a passive verb in the correct tense.

Barford Hall

The building at the top of the High Street is Barford Hall. It ___________ (build) in 1827 and today it ___________ (regard) as the finest Georgian building in the country. A number of changes ___________ (make) since it was built, but the front of the building ___________ (not change). Today, the Hall ___________ (own) by Bardale Council, and for the last ten years, it ___________ (use) as a home for Barford Arts Centre. At the moment, a small art gallery ___________ (build) behind the hall.

2) Look at these newspaper headlines and tell your friend whats in the news. Use the passive with get in the Present perfect or the Present continuous

a) POST OFFICE LOSES IMPORTANT DOCUMENT. You: An important document _____________________________________________________________________ b) THIEVES STEALING MORE BICYCLES, SAY POLICE. You: More bicycles _____________________________________________________________________________ c) HEAVY LORRIES DAMAGING MOTORWAYS. You: The motorways ____________________________________________________________________________ d) VANDALS KNOCK WALL DOWN. You: _________________________________________________________________________________________ e) STORM BLOWS OFF ROOF. You: _________________________________________________________________________________________ f) COMPANIES PAYING INDUSTRIAL WORKERS HIGHER WAGES. You: _________________________________________________________________________________________

3) Circle the correct form of the verb into this news report.

Dangerous storms in England

Millions of pounds worth of damage has caused/has been caused by a storm which passed/was passed across the north of England last night. The River Ribble burst/was burst its banks after heavy rain. People

rescued/were rescued from the floods by firemen, who received/were received numerous calls for help. Wind

speeds reached/were reached ninety miles an hour in some places. Roads blocked/were blocked by fallen trees and electricity lines brought/were brought down, leaving thousands of homes without electricity. ,,Everything possible is doing/is being done to get the situation back to normal, a spokesman said/was said.


Alejandro English Teacher

4) Write two new sentences with the same meaning. Begin each with the underlined words.

a) They teach useful work skills to our staff.

b) They offer company shares to most employees.

c) They allow all employees six weeks holiday.

d) They give opportunities to people with initiative.

e) They give help to people moving house.


They pay a sum of money to women who leave to have children.


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5) Change these sentences into passive.

a) They dont pay Jim very much.

b) They have offered heavy smokers a new treatment to help them give up.

c) They were offering cigarettes to the children at the school entrance gate.

d) They will ask you a lot of questions at the interview.

e) They awarded Camilo José Cela the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1989.


His colleagues gave him a present when he retired

g) We will send you your examination results as soon as they are ready.

h) They will give the volunteers special training in helping people with addictions.


They pay workers on the tobacco plantation very little.


We should educate young people about risks of alcohol.

6) Write sentences with the pattern have something done.

a) Susan is at the opticians. She is going to test her eyes. Susan... b) Peter went to the dentist. He filled his tooth. Peter... c) The actress went to the photographers studio. He took her a photo. The actress... d) Adrian is talking to the mechanic who has serviced his car. e) Our windows cleaner comes once a month. f) The Watsons dishwasher has broken down. The engineer is repairing it. 3

Alejandro English Teacher

7) Say what happened to these people.

a) The tourists luggage was searched in customs. The tourists... b) Angelas car was stolen from outside her house. Angela... c) The familys electricity was cut off. d) Old peoples pensions have been decreased by five per cent.

8) Report these rumours. Instead of the active (People say) use the passive (It is said; He is said to)

a) People say the actress Tania Revesky has refused a part in the film. b) Anns friends have reported she is furious at losing her job. c) Lots of people believe the Prime Minister and his wife are getting divorced. d) They knew John was killed with a knife. e) People know the President is in favour of the new law. f) Journalists have said the footballer Gary Johnson earns £1 million a year.

g) People say the bridge is unsafe. h) They reported the President had suffered a heart attack. i) They believe Manchester will win the championship.


Alejandro English Teacher

9) Change these sentences into the passive.

a) We clean the garages every day. The garages b) Someone has given him a lot of money He c) Someones interviewing Dr Johnson at the moment. Is d) Did the police arrest two hundred people yesterday? Were e) They cleaned my car yesterday. I f) I g) Do they check every car engine thoroughly? Is h) You mustnt use this machine after 5:30 PM. This machine i) We export this computer to seventy different countries. Someone cleaned my carpets every year.

This computer j) They have cancelled the meeting.

The meeting k) They are going to repaint her house They are going l) We opened the factory at nine oclock.

The factory m) They will clean my coat. I n) We dont allow smoking in this restaurant. Smoking o) You should keep the flowers in a warm sunny place. Flowers


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p) They sent two million books to America every year. Two million books q) Have you told him not to be late again? Has r) Someone stole Johns bag yesterday.

John s) We invited two hundred people to the wedding. Two hundred people t) I have told the children about the party.

The children u) They posted all the letters yesterday. All the letters v) They paid me a lot of money to do the job. I w) Fortunately, they didnt damage the machinery. Fortunately, the machinery x) Someones moved my chair. My chair y) They process my films in England. I


Alejandro English Teacher

10) Change these sentences into the passive.

a) We should educate young people about the risks of alcohol. b) They are fitting our new carpet tomorrow. c) They will give the volunteers special training in helping people with addictions. d) Someone stole Bobs bike. e) They pay the workers on the tobacco plantation very little. f) They will announce the results of the competition tomorrow.

g) The police in New York have arrested three terrorists. h) John lent me this book. i) j) They are building a new museum in the city centre. Did the idea interest you?

k) They have offered heavy smokers a new treatment to help them give up. l) The dentist took out one of my teeth yesterday.

m) My parents gave me a ring. n) They were offering cigarettes to the children at the school entrance gate. o) Why didnt they mend the roof before it fell in? p) Previous climbers had cut steps in the ice. q) Peter gave a present to Karen. r) They have just painted Anns portrait.

s) People must not leave bicycles in the hall. t) They showed her the easiest way to do it. 7

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u) Have they stamped the letter yet? v) A Japanese firm makes these television sets. w) They teach useful work skills to our staff. x) The dentist is filling Peters tooth. y) Do they offer most employees company shares? z) They are watching my house. aa) An earthquake destroyed the town. bb) The optician is going to test Susans eyes. cc) They are giving opportunities to people with initiative. dd) Did they throw away the rubbish? ee) Our window cleaner comes once a month. ff) They will pay a sum of money to women who leave to have children. gg) Must visitors leave umbrellas and sticks in the cloakroom? hh) We have to pick the fruit very early in the morning. ii) The engineer is repairing the Watsons dishwasher. jj) We will prosecute trespassers.


Alejandro English Teacher

11) Put into the correct active or passive form.

a) She promised him a book. He b) They will take her to hospital tomorrow. She c) You cannot expect children to understand these problems. Children d) No-one has climbed this mountain before. This mountain e) He disappeared and no-one has seen him again. He disappeared and f) I was told the latest news by a friend this morning.

A friend g) Have you ever been called a fool before? Has h) She was recommended a new doctor by her friend. Her friend i) Did j) Did k) People will show the visitor the new buildings. The visitor l) You m) Someone ordered the prisoners to stand up. The prisoners n) I want someone to answer the phone call. I want Someone will tell you what time the train leaves. Were you given enough sugar? Were you offered the job I told you about?


Alejandro English Teacher

12) Passive with verbs + preposition. Change these sentences into the passive.

a) They will send for you when the boss arrives. b) He put off the meeting. c) They picked the students up from the school. d) Poor John! A drunk driver ran him over. e) We must go into this matter. f) Look how well they have brought up those children.

g) Be careful what you say, as they will take down all your words.

13) Interrogative form. Put these questions into the passive.

a) Is somebody picking you up tonight? b) Did they give up the search after three hours? c) Did anyone send you the photograph which they promised you? d) Can we solve the problem? e) Are you going to tell her the whole truth? f) Did anyone ask you any questions?


Alejandro English Teacher

14) Passive with reporting verbs. Put the following sentences into the passive.

a) People claim the Mona Lisa is the world's most famous painting. The Mona Lisa b) Experts believe it was a portrait of a nobleman. It is c) They say her smile hides a secret. Her smile d) Many believe it is Leonardo's masterpiece. It is e) Scientists know he was a wonderful engineer too. He is f) Historians think he was unhappy in old age.

He is g) People think the fire started at about 8 o'clock. The fire h) They say experts are studying objects from a Spanish ship. Experts i) They believe the ship was carrying gold bars.

The ship

15) Rewrite the sentences in a different way.

a) You can only see these particles through a microscope. These particles b) People are using computers in all kinds of work. Computers c) You have to keep dangerous chemicals in a safe place. Dangerous d) You should have left the laboratory unlocked. The laboratory e) We are unlikely to discover intelligent life on other planets. Intelligent life


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Three million people watch TV plays every week.

TV plays g) The critics gave the play good reviews. The play h) A Greek architect is designing the new concert hall. The new concert hall i) If the novel were published in paperback, more people would read it.

The novel j) Two million people have already seen the exhibition.

The exhibition k) They are going to knock down the old theatre. The old theatre l) They were still painting the walls when I left.

The walls m) An American invented the laser. The laser

16) Rewrite these sentences with the new beginnings.

a) No one ever uses this room. This room b) This building is said to be 2,000 years old. They c) The teacher made the class stay in after school. The class d) Was it a monkey that bit your finger? Was your e) They were mending the road all last week. All last week the road f) They say the castle is 500 years old.

The castle


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g) The police ordered the crowds to move on. The crowds h) No one ever saw him again. He i) Rembrandt painted this picture.

This picture j) No one ever discovered the identity of the murdered man.

The identity k) The owners completely redecorated their house before they sold it. The house l) The car still needs cleaning.

The car hasn't m) Rich people don't impress me. I n) They ought to mend the roof. The roof o) Brazil produces large quantities of coffee. Large quantities p) He didn't let anyone touch the microscope. No-one q) Someone is painting our house. We r) We The painters decorated our house last week.


Alejandro English Teacher

16) Turn these sentences into the passive form.

a) An expert is restoring the antique car.

b) Steven Spielberg has directed a lot of successful films.

c) The judge has fined him £300.

d) A number of reporters will meet the professor at the airport.

e) A famous designer is going to redecorate the Presidents house.


The Romans founded Bath in the first century A.D.

g) A nightmare woke Mary up.

h) Muslims celebrate Ramadan.


Did Van Gogh paint "Sunflowers"?.


Could anyone buy these diamonds?.

k) Scientists might discover a cure for cancer.


Someone should help the old woman across the street.

m) They might have arrested the escaped prisoner.

n) They should have provided more food at the reception.

o) They ought to warn the public about him.

p) They must bring their books to class.

q) They could have written the answers more clearly.


Alejandro English Teacher


American planes dropped two atomic bombs on Japan in 1945.

s) People can see the Everest from that window.


Theyve repaired that car twice this year.

u) Im going to design a new type of chair.

v) Everybody may read this book in many different languages.

w) Bill had paid the bill.

x) Has Dior designed your clothes?

y) Nobody found the treasure.

z) Do you have to mend your glasses?

aa) They are building new roads all over the country.

bb) They have just brought them dinner.

cc) They have already taken a decision.

dd) Have they lent her a fur coat?

ee) Japanese have invented a faster computer.

ff) How much money did they steal?


Alejandro English Teacher

13) Turn from active to passive. Omit the agent where it can be omitted.

a) They kill elephants for ivory.

B) Homer wrote "The Iliad".

c) People chop down a lot of trees every year.

d) The government will introduce new measures against crime.

e) Someone has burgled Anns house.

f) She offered me a cup of tea.

g) They check passports at Passport Control.

h) A million people visit the cathedral every year.

i) Someone has stolen Mikes car.

j) Anna forgave me for not calling her.


Alejandro English Teacher

14) Turn the following into the passive in two ways, if possible.

a) They gave him a watch when he retired.

b) They have offered him the job.

c) She will send you a fax.

d) They are going to show me a new technique.

e) Someone would lend her a book.


How much will they pay you?

g) They are giving the students extra lessons.

h) They have shown her the plans for the house.


They should have sent you a receipt.


My parents promised me a new computer for my birthday.

k) My mum told me a tale at night when I was a child.


We gave the police the information.


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m) Somebody paid the men £200.

n) They had asked me some difficult questions at the interview.

o) Jessicas colleagues gave her a present when she retired.

p) Nobody told me that Michael was sick.

q) I think they should have offered John the job.

16) Turn the following into the passive using the ,,it is said and ,,he is said to pattern.

a) Journalists report that the President is ill.

b) Everyone knows that the statement was untrue.

c) Many people believe that the climate is changing.

d) Everyone knows that he has been in prison.

e) Many people say that the new prices are too high.


They claim that this diamond costs £100,000.

g) People expect him to win.

h) They report that two people were injured in the explosion.


They knew the crisis was in its last days.


Teachers say that the present educational system has a number of failures. 18

Alejandro English Teacher

k) Everyone expects that the strike will end soon.


Experts report that the building was badly damaged by the fire.

m) The police think that the prisoner escaped by climbing over a wall.

n) They say that the company is losing a lot of money.

o) They believe that the company lost a lot of money last year.

p) They expect that the company will lose money this year.

q) They report that many people are homeless after the floods.

17) Turn the following into the passive using the ,,have something done pattern.

a) A man is painting our house at the moment.

b) They will make another key for me.

c) They deliver the newspaper to my home every day.

d) The workers installed the air conditioning at our house last week.

e) They havent developed my film yet.


They should clean her coat.

g) That hairdresser cut my hair.

h) The cleaning service at the hotel shined my shoes.


The mechanics are fixing Johns car.


Someone stole all their money while they were on vacation.


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k) Bills nose was broken in a fight.


They turned off my electricity because I didnt pay the bill.

m) The police took away Dianes passport.


Alejandro English Teacher

Extra) Convert these into the passive without any help.

Someone must tell him about the accident.

They are going to rebuild the Town Hall.

People expect Barça will get to the final.

People know that Real Madrid is the best football team.

Nobody could find the lost climber.

The police have arrested the thieves.

Jane gave me a present for my birthday.

They are building a new car park in the neighbourhood.

I went to the hairdresser and he cut my hair.

People thought that Jimmi Hendrix was a genius.

People believe King Arthur lived in the 9th century.

People expect that Rodrigo Rato will resign due to the BBVA scandal.

A professional photographer will take all my wedding photographs.

They told Peter not to play such loud music.

Everybody should read this article carefully.

Bob sold the house in the hill to Mr Brown. 21

Alejandro English Teacher

People believe that the Loch Ness Monster really existed.

My car needs servicing.

They sacked Mary last week.

Someone stole Ann's purse in the underground.

They filmed 55 Days in Peking in Spain.

They asked John to resign.

In the Middle Ages people believed that the Earth was flat.

Nobody understood his talk.

Your house needs painting.

Jane sent Peter a thank-you letter.

People believe that Nostradamus' predictions will come true.

They are going to revise the club's rules.

Somebody must do it.

I took my ring to the jeweller's and he mended it.

People believe that the climate is changing.

Nobody must open this door.


Alejandro English Teacher

People expect the new government will reduce taxes.

They gave John another opportunity.

Mary will send all the letters, as scheduled.

Your car needs servicing.

It's said that the new Harry Potter film will be released in June.

They told John to stop messing around.

Somebody should bring cold drinks to the party.

People believe that the Forum will be a success.

The milkman brings the milk to my door but the postman leaves the letters in the hall.

In future, perhaps, they won't bring letters to the houses, and we shall have to collect them from the Post Office.

People steal things from supermarkets every day; someone stole twenty bottles of whisky from this one last week.T

Normally men sweep this street every day, but nobody swept it last week.

The postman clears this box three times a day. He last cleared it at 2.30.

Someone turned on a light in the hall and opened the door.

The women clean the upstairs offices between seven and eight in the morning.

He never saw him in the dining-room. A maid took all his meals up to him.


Alejandro English Teacher

Someone left this purse in a classroom yesterday; the cleaner found it.

We build well over 1,000 new houses a year. Last year we built 1,500.

We serve hot meals till 10.30, and guests can order coffee and sandwiches up to 11.30.

Passengers leave all sorts of things in buses. The conductors collect them and send them to the Lost Property Office.

An ambulance took the sick man to hospital. (Mention ambulance.)

We kill and injure people on the roads every day. Can't we do something about this?

Dogs guard the warehouse. The other day a thief tried to get in and a dog saw him and chased him.

The watchman called the police. The police arrested the man.

You can't wash this dress; you must dry-clean it.

They are demolishing the entire block.

He recommends fitting new tyres. (Use should)

He suggested allowing council tenants to buy their houses.

Men with slide rules used to do these calculations; now a computer does them.

The court tried the man, found him guilty and sent him to prison.

The hall porter polishes the knockers of all the flats every day. -Well, he hasn't polished mine for a week.

They are repairing my piano at the moment.


Alejandro English Teacher

Passengers shouldn't throw away their tickets as inspectors may check these during the journey.

They invited Jack, but they didn't invite Tom.

The guests ate all the sandwiches and drank all the beer. They left nothing.

Has someone posted my parcel?

Why did no one inform me of the change of plan?

Tom Smith wrote the book and Brown Co. published it.

We shall have to tow the car to the garage.

They haven't stamped the letter.

They didn't pay me for the work; they expected me to do it for nothing.

He escaped when they were moving him from one prison to another.

She didn't introduce me to her mother.

A frightful crash wakened me at 4 a.m.

When they have widened this street the roar of the traffic will keep residents awake all night.

They threw away the rubbish.

A Japanese firm makes these television sets.

An earthquake destroyed the town.


Alejandro English Teacher

A machine could do this much more easily.

Visitors must leave umbrellas and sticks in the cloakroom.

We ask tenants not to play their radios loudly after midnight.

We can't repair your clock.

We cannot exchange articles which customers have bought during the sale. (Articles...)

We have to pick the fruit very early in the morning; otherwise we can't get it to the market in time.

The police shouldn't allow people to park here.

They are watching my house.

The examiner will read the passage three times.

Candidates may not use dictionaries.

You need not type this letter.

You mustn't move this man; he is too ill. You'll have to leave him here.

They searched his house and found a number of stolen articles.

Nobody has used this room for ages.

They took him for a Frenchman, his French was so good.

You should have taken those books back to the library.


Alejandro English Teacher

They brought the children up in Italy.

They have taken down the For Sale notice, so I suppose they have sold the house.

Someone broke into his house and stole a lot of his things.

We have warned you.

A lorry knocked him down.

They returned my keys to me; someone had picked them up in the street.

We had to give the books back; they did not allow us to take them home.

You shouldn't leave these documents on the desk. You should lock them up.

They handed round coffee and biscuits.

They have tried other people's schemes. Why have they never tried my scheme?

People have given George a lot of presents for his birthday.

Someone has told me told me that story before.

Someone paid him £50 for that awful lecture.

They have asked us that question many times.

They taught Jane's daughter Latin when she was only six years old.

They offered that writer the Nobel Prize.


Alejandro English Teacher

They didn't offer Clara any money for her painting.

No one has given me an answer.

They didn't pay miners good wages in those days.

They didn't teach children that kind of mathematics when I was young.

People won't ask you that question.

No one will tell us the answer until tomorrow.

Will they give us enough food?

Have they told you how to do it?

Did anyone tell you where to go?

Did anyone offer the plumber a cup of tea?

Did they ask the minister about that?

Did anyone pay the workers their wages last week?

The Government has called out troops.

Fog held up the trains (agent required)

You are to leave this here. Someone will call for it later on.

We called in the police.


Alejandro English Teacher

They didn't look after the children properly.

They are flying in reinforcements.

They called up men of 28.

Everyone looked up to him.

All the ministers will see him off at the airport.

He hasn't slept in his bed.

We can build on more rooms.

They threw him out.

They will have to adopt a different attitude.

He's a very dangerous maniac. They ought to lock him up.

Her story didn't take them in. (agent required)

Burglars broke into the house.

The manufacturers are giving away small plastic toys with each packet of cereal.

They took down the notice.

They frown on smoking here.

People must hand in their weapons.



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