A nation lost in translation

From: ME Wright, Grove Road, Harrogate.

A RECENT conversation with a Paris taxi driver confirmed Brian Sheridan’s reference to our being regarded as “the linguistic dunces of Europe” (Yorkshire Post, June 28).

He asked if my son and I were Canadian and I asked him why he thought so. “Because you speak both French and English,” he replied. I confirmed that we were Brits, adding with a defensive smile: “Some of us do try to speak other languages.”

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Mr Sheridan rightly complains of negative attitudes to foreign languages; could this be linked to our “island mentality”, I wonder? A French friend, whose English, both formal and vernacular, often sounds better than mine, tells me he started learning it aged eight.

I’m pleased to report that North Yorkshire schools are now adopting a similar policy with French, whetting linguistic appetites while minds are at their most receptive.

In no hurray to cheer Murray

From: Mike Perry, Oakleigh View, Baildon.

WHY do many English people vocally support during Wimbledon an uncharismatic guy who openly dislikes England?

This is coupled with the fact that the players are playing for themselves, eg Murray is playing for Andy Murray and not, in his case, Scotland.

I love Scotland, stunning scenery and the people there are hospitality personified and of course I support them and Wales and Ireland (North and Republic) in events if England are out.

Shame Mr Charismatic Nadal is out, but there are still many more players to get behind.