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bainbrig | 13:43 Tue 13th Feb 2018 | Society & Culture
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Heard on BBC London TV this morning:

“W HAITCH Smith” (for W H Smith).

There is no such word as HAITCH,

Or have they changed the language?


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Oh yes, one of my pet hates!
Must have caused a lot of confusion
BBC English at its best.
Well how would you pronounce it???
Yes aitch is correct without the aspiration.
That's right, sharon. Look it up in the dictionary:

aitch - 8th letter of the alphabet.
Pronunciation is usually a matter of inherited speech patterns - I say 'Aitch', Mrs Hughes says 'Haitch' - it's not important.
Not important Andy, but incorrect.
From the BBC web site here:


British English dictionaries give aytch as the standard pronunciation for the letter H. However, the pronunciation haytch is also attested as a legitimate variant. We also do not ask broadcasters who naturally say haytch to change their pronunciation but if a broadcaster contacted to ask us, we would tell them that aytch is regarded as the standard pronunciation in British English, people can feel very strongly about this and this pronunciation is less likely to attract audience complaints.

Haytch is a standard pronunciation in Irish English and is increasingly being used by native English-speaking people all across the country, irrespective of geographical provenance or social standing. Polls have shown that the uptake of haytch by younger native speakers is on the rise. Schoolchildren repeatedly being told not to drop Hs may cause them to hyper-correct and insert them where they don't exist.

Jo Kim

BBC Pronunciation Unit
Another pet hate which I keep hearing is 'mischievous' pronounced as MISCHEEVIOUS - even more annoying than 'haitch'
It really annoys me too. Very interesting article from the BBC.
They should be sent to the libary for the rest of Febuary to sort out there langwidge skils.
Join me in the slough of despond where I land so often when listening to R4 - supposedly a bastion of decent English. The article is interesting and depressing.

I'm thinking that a common understanding and usage of standard English is becoming ever more essential, because sections of society are drifting apart more and more and becoming unable to communicate with each other.

A case for English lessons in schools to concentrate more on the language content i.m.o.. (Ex-English teacher who started when grammar, spelling, punctuation and vocabulary lessons were taught every week as the norm - as well as literature, comprehension and all the other bits.)

Question Author
Yes, oh yes.

When ‘we’ were young, we were corrected. When I taught, I corrected.

I have a feeling that now more importance is placed on confidence-boosting than correcting, leaving the poor *** at a disadvantage when they get out into the real world.
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PS: what happens, dear nanny, when we want to discuss lumps of grass and earth?
Haitch is older in use than is sickth, maybe both are correct.....or is it neither ?
Divot BB?
Clod, as in that painter bloke, Money. :-)
Question Author
As in

“If I were dead and buried,
And I heard your voice,
Beneath the sod
My heart of dust Would still rejoice.”

Beneath the clod really doesn’t do it.

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