East Midlands Oral History Archive


The materials provided within the pages of this website form the outputs of a collaborative research project conducted by researchers from the University of Leicester and Nottingham Trent University. This British Academy funded project concerned itself with identifying variation and potential changes in the East Midlands dialect that can be observed to have taken place over the last century. In order to address a gap in previous linguistic research in the area, this study aimed to examine a number of recorded oral history interviews that were conducted in the latter half of the last century and compare those with interviews conducted more recently.

In approaching this task, the East Midlands area was divided into four counties for which example recordings of spoken vernacular could be obtained:

Between 6 and 8 speakers were selected as a representative sample for both male/female, younger/older and urban/rural speakers from each county. A short extract was then taken from each interview from which linguistic notes were made regarding particularly interesting features of non-standard pronunciation (phonology), grammar and lexis (region-specific dialect words). By non-standard, we mean those features that would not be shared by a speaker of Standard English with an RP accent.

Back to top