The papers were full this morning of the results of a new poll survey; the headline finding being that Scouse is the least-trusted, least-friendly and least intelligent-sounding of all of Britain’s various regional accents. Wow I’m staggered. And no doubt all the respondents were from leafy Barnes and Weybridge. By all accounts The Devon accent was considered the most friendly with the Brummie accent the most neutral. Received Pronunciation or the Queen’s speech was considered the most intelligent-sounding by a long margin. How frightfully orf hend.
I have to say that I disagree with the poll in many respects. This is a very subjective survey obviously and I’m conditioned by history and my upbringing in the north but as a bit of fun I would rate our accents as follows:
– the strange street patois that kids from everywhere seem to speak with its excessive use of ‘like’ and ‘innit’.
– Northern Irish which is very uneasy on the ear, especially when bellowed by the likes of the Rev Ian Paisley
– the very guttural Glaswegian accent
– whiney Brummie accent
– the Swansea accent; it’s just not that lush.
– my father will never forgive me but Manc speak is unlovely. Fortunately its not as bad as scouse which is difficult to appreciate if you’re not from Liverpool.
– I don’t know about it’s intelligence coefficient but old-fashioned aristo RP is the most grating accent of all to me.
– I spent a lot of time in Edinburgh in my BT days and I must confess to a liking for that Scottish east coast drawl
– western Ireland – there’s a lyrical almost song like quality to the speech of the Kerrymen and women which I love to hear
– Geordie, I can’t help but like the sound of it even though it’s mostly unintelligible.
– top of the tree… South Yorkshire, where Dewsbury is happily pronounced as Jowsbry and nobody seems to notice nor get embarrassed. I smile whenever I hear it
– Cockerny. I love the fact that the rhyming slang continues to evolve with contemporary references eg Jenson for mutton though does anybody really speak it these days? Certainly no-one on Eastenders.
– west country burr or bumpkin. It’s worth heading to Dorset just to hear it.
– those folks from East Anglia who just abandon letters from words so that Norwich is pronounced as Narch. Just amusing.
– politicians and estate agency speak. No contest.