January 28, 2005 | Misc/General Career News

WITH the Parly already wringing their hands over the numbers of young people leaving Scotland to live in England and abroad, the current vogue for our accent couldn’t have come at a worse time.

A recent survey confirmed that the Scots brogue is the nation’s favourite – and across the pond it is soaring in popularity.

Just to get you up to speed, Johnny Depp has been Oscar nominated for playing Peter Pan author J.M. Barrie in Finding Neverland.

Throughout the film he uses a highly suspect ‘Kirriemuir’ accent.

To you and I it sounds like it was perhaps inspired by Sean Connery’s hairdresser, but in Beverly Hills it is the height of fashion.

Meanwhile, also in Hollywood, Ewan McGregor gets to play opposite Scarlett Johansson, Gerard Butler is taken seriously and even Craig Ferguson, who I still think of as Bing Hitler, has been given his own chat show.

Not only that, but we also have Edinburgh’s Kenny Richey being freed from Death Row after 18 years AND Ross King landing a job reading the weather.

As for Gordon Ramsay, do you think Americans would tolerate his swearing so much if he did it in cockney?

Not on your life.

It’s the fact he is Scottish that makes him so popular – and perhaps even feared by some, given how gruff he can appear to be at times.

Well that and the fact he can beef Wellington with the best, but there’s a novelty value to that too – I mean who ever heard of a Glaswegian man who liked cooking?

My worry about this sudden flowering in popularity of Scottishness is that it will spark a severe drain on our nation’s rather limited resources of top broadcasting talent.

There are already rumours that the BBC – searching for a long-term replacement for David Dimbleby to cover state occasions such as Royal funerals and the opening of Parliament – may be about to lure Tam Cowan south.

B UT he’ll only go if Offside can relocate to London Television Centre, where he can lure big name American movie star guests: “See you, Tam Cruise, do you own yon clothes shop in Glasgow city centre?”

In addition, Dougie Vipond looks set to stand in for Jonathan Ross on his Radio Two show, football pundit Jim Traynor will be leaving Radio Scotland to step into Bruce Forsyth’s dancing shoes in Strictly Come Dancing, and Heather the Weather is to read the evening news.

What we need is for Holyrood to immediately ring-fence our most talented broadcasters to prevent the biggest Scottish talent drain since Stevie Crawford went to Plymouth.

Otherwise, who knows what job Chick Young will end up with next? Do you want to see him presenting Mastermind?

Publication: The Mirror

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