I do NOT have a broad lancashire accent.
For all those who might think this is a bit of a daft personal rant rather than an interesting blog post, hear me out. Everyone from every part of the world has an accent – it is unavoidable. There are high pitched ones, slow ones, fast ones, squeaky ones, completely and unavoidably annoying ones, and there are posh ones. But no matter what your accent is i feel that you should be proud of it. It is part of you, your life and heritage; where you grew up, the people who raised and befriended you, the places you visited or moved. It is a part of person which will forever be with you, no matter how many elocution lessons you take.
However, what does drive me insane is the way that people use accents to belittle and mock those around them. Coming from a part of lancashire that has a wide variety of accents, from the very broad to the shockingly posh, i find it important that whilst we can jest and enjoy our differences; that they do not become rallying points with which people can cause hurt and discrimination.
In the town next to mine, the famous Chorley (forever immortalised by Peter Kay) most people have a very broad accent that can be both endearing and amusing to those of us who have friends and family from there. Even though the distance is not more than 15 miles at the most, the accents can be seen to be of such a great contrast that i have heard on more than one occasion my chorley friends calling my accent posh and my leyland friends calling them common. Such a small distance becomes a gap made huge by the differences in accents.
Anyway back to my point, after the years and years of people in television and the public eye being forced to use the Queens English in order to seem proper to appear before the general public, i think it is important that in these modern days we embrace our accents.
So in that light, i would like to say that – No i do not have a broad lancashire accent; i have an accent that encompasses my mother’s yorkshire influence, my step-father’s london background, my leyland upbringing, my many friends with thick “chorley” accents and the suprising ability i seem to have in picking up random accents the longer i am around them. In short, my accent is NOT a broad lancashire accent, it is MY accent and i am proud of it and all its influences.