Letter: Adieu to a language we can call our own

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Sir: Reading David Blunkett's letter (25 June) on the use of 'Hi' in southern England, I have to relate worse news. Teaching with the British Council abroad in the past two years, I found that I and one other teacher were alone in the teacher's room in using 'hello'.

I come back to the UK to find my worst fears confirmed: the immigration officer at Heathrow returning my passport with 'There you go'. In the following weeks, I discovered that every male in the land was now a 'guy'; no more blokes, chaps or fellows. Everyone now 'guesses' and no longer 'supposes' and every other verb is prefaced by 'like'.

I learnt at university that we create different texts to enhance our identity. Our identity is now anchored in New York, New York. Why has this happened so swiftly in the past five years? Am I right?

Missing you already,


Drama Department

University of Exeter


25 June