Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 14°C

Search

What’s killing the Suffolk accent? Speech therapist crosses globe to record dialect’s demise

Speech and language therapist Sam Heriz is returning to Suffolk from Australia for an art residency, commemorating the local accent, at Snape Maltings. Picture: SHAPE CREATIVE AGENCY

Speech and language therapist Sam Heriz is returning to Suffolk from Australia for an art residency, commemorating the local accent, at Snape Maltings. Picture: SHAPE CREATIVE AGENCY

Archant

A Suffolk native is returning to her home county from the other side of the world – on a mission to preserve a disappearing dialect.

Samantha Heriz begins her residency at Snape Maltings in September. Picture: PHILIP VILESamantha Heriz begins her residency at Snape Maltings in September. Picture: PHILIP VILE

Samantha J Heriz, who grew up in Palgrave, near Diss, before travelling the world and settling in southeast Australia, was motivated by her last return trip, during which she discovered an audio collection of local accents at the Suffolk Record Office.

“When I mentioned this to a German friend, she didn’t know there was a Suffolk accent,” said the former Diss High School pupil, whose mother still lives locally.

“Sadly, it’s disappearing. It’s not as robust as accents in places like Yorkshire, where people can be instantly identified as natives.

“Even elements of West Country English are dying – partly down to globalization.

Fishermen at Aldeburgh. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARYFishermen at Aldeburgh. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

“In Suffolk, another reason is movement from London.”

Samantha left Suffolk with a speech sciences degree in 2007. She now has two daughters, works as a speech therapist, and recently completed a master’s in fine art.

On June 5, she launches a funding drive for Trans/Muting Suffolk: The Attrition of the Suffolk Accent, having secured a residency at Snape Maltings in September – working with a sound technician to record voices of local residents, which will be transcribed and compared to the accent of an Aldeburgh fisherman in the Heritage Lottery funded Suffolk Voices Restored collection, before becoming an immersive sound installation at next year’s Aldeburgh Festival.

According to Samantha, the Suffolk dialect is recognisable by characteristics like ‘yod-dropping’ – with ‘new’ pronounced ‘noo’.

“I want to detect how much the accent has changed,” she said.

“Being from Suffolk, I feel pretty well placed to take this on.”

Bridget Hanley, collections manager at Suffolk Record Office, said: “Suffolk people are fiercely proud of their history and the local dialect, and it is important to celebrate this.”

Rebecca Knights, residencies producer at Snape Maltings, said the project would “enable Samantha to grow as an artist and develop new skills and learning, but also have an immediate impact for Snape Maltings.”

Samantha, who is being mentored by Regional Arts Victoria and Australia-based crowdfunding platform Pozible, aims to raise almost £3,500 for the project.

To donate, visit rav.pozible.com/project/trans-muting-suffolk-1.

British Transport Police (BTP) from Colchester were sent to reports of a rave close to a railway station in east Suffolk last night.

Veteran television presenter Sir Bruce Forsyth has died at the age of 89, his manager has said.

A former employee of an Essex business who sold stolen bottles of perfume and other toiletry items on eBay for more than £4,000 has walked free from court after a judge decided not to send her straight to prison.

The chairman of the 18th Ipswich Scout Group says he is “appalled” after discovering the club’s minibus was stolen yesterday.

Highways officials predict severe congestion from even modest increases in traffic from developments surrounding a pinch point junction.

Engineers from Network Rail are expected to work around the clock this weekend to ensure the rail line between East Anglia and the rest of the country is open again by Monday morning.

One of the most popular folk festivals in the country got under way yesterday as people started to pour in for three days of relaxed fun and excellent music.

Most read

Eating Out in the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Eating Out
supplement

View

Visit the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Visit the Broads
supplement

View

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24