Laura puts Chorley accent under the microscope

Laura Coleman, left.
Laura Coleman, left.
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The Chorley accent is coming under close scrutiny.

University student Laura Coleman has been rounding up folk throughout the borough in an effort to find out how Chorley people speak.

Laura, 22, a final year student at the University of Manchester, has chosen the project for a dissertation.

“It’s really interesting,” she said.

“I’ve not really analysed the results yet, so I’m not sure if it’s what I’m expecting or not.

“I would say so far, men seem to have what we would think is a more typical Chorley accent than the women.

“There seems to be a difference between the younger speakers and older speakers.

“I’m not sure if that’s because they might have been to university, or maybe just a spread of other factors.

“After I have acoustically analysed the data I will have a clearer picture regarding everything and only then I will be able to see whether there are actually any differences or not between speakers?”

Laura lives with mum
Diane, 48, an admin assistant, dad Andy, 47, an engineer, and sister Sophie, 18, at home in Euxton at weekends and in Manchester during the week. Apart from moving to university, Laura has lived in Euxton all her life.

She attended Primrose Hill Primary School, Euxton, and then Parklands High, Chorley. She has worked part-time at Booths in Chorley town centre, for the last five years.

Laura explained: “I am also trying to get some comments regarding people’s perceptions of the Chorley accent and whether they like it or think they have an accent which is representative of the area.

“I also would like to point out that my research isn’t here to criticise the accent or anything like that, I don’t want anyone to think that.

“We are very much interested in differences in language and documenting what different accents are like and any changes which are going on in the community.

“Linguists do not believe any kind of language or accent is wrong and most of our work is to highlight differences across people and regions and explore why these differences may occur. To us the differences are fascinating.”

Laura said lots of people had been accommodating and helpful.

“I am very appreciative for this,” she said.

“It’s going to be a very challenging couple of months, but I’m sure once May comes round it will be worth it.”