Brummies feel least need for better speaking skills

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The Independent Online

Their accent has long been maligned as the least attractive in Britain but it seems the people of Birmingham have a quality which allows them to weather such criticism – they don't care.

Their accent has long been maligned as the least attractive in Britain but it seems the people of Birmingham have a quality which allows them to weather such criticism – they don't care.

Brummies have been revealed as the Britons who feel they have the least to do when it comes to improving how they express themselves in public.

A survey for colleges of further education found that just 42 per cent of Brummies felt the need to be able to speak more clearly. The finding put the masters of the nasal twang ahead of compatriots in the self-confidence stakes, with half of the Welsh people questioned feeling a need to brush up skills, along with 51 per cent of Londoners and 54 per cent of Scots.

The study was carried out ahead of a campaign by colleges and the BBC to improve communication skills with a programme of short courses and a related television series. David Gibson, chief executive of the Association of Colleges, said: "Many people lack the confidence to stand up in public or to express themselves. It can mean that things such as giving a best man's speech at a wedding, which should be a real pleasure, can spark terror in people."

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