Soaring demand for elocution lessons as Britons seek to lose their regional accents

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According to a new study by, worries about employment and promotion prospects fuel demand for voice coaching.

A growing number of anxious Britons are turning to elocution tutors to help them reduce their regional accents and improve the way they speak, according to a new study.
Hundreds of people who contacted the UK’s leading private tuition website in 2011 said they wanted to modify or lose their accents because they feared being ridiculed or held back in their careers.
Among the reasons given for seeking elocution lessons were a desire to be taken more seriously and worries about employment and promotion prospects. Many people who contacted the website said they needed help because they had a fear of public speaking and giving presentations at work or at job interviews.
The largest number of enquiries came from people living in the West Midlands, many of them looking for help to soften their Birmingham or Black Country accents. Other regions where large numbers of people have turned to elocution tutors for help with their accents include London and the South East, Manchester, Merseyside, the North of England and the West Country.
Last year, received over 20,000 enquiries from people seeking tuition across a broad range of subjects, including more than 500 requests for elocution coaching. An analysis for the website shows that elocution teachers received more enquiries than teachers of any other subject in 2011, with many tutors having to turn away requests for help.
The report, Elocution in the new Britain: trends in private tuition, also looks at the most popular academic subjects, languages and musical instruments with people seeking private tuition in 2011.
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