I read your report in the Lincs Free Press of March 7 (‘Speaking English will help migrant settlers’) with great interest.
I have lived next door to several Polish people and at the moment the avenue I live in has a wide mixture of Europeans, some will speak, some will not – mainly because they cannot.
I have a Polish friend who told me that although both her and her husband could speak English when they came here she found that the English they learned in Poland was American English and Lincolnshire English was different.
She also made the point that she would not leave her two small children with some of her relatives when they were visiting as they could not speak English and they would not be able to contact emergency services should the need arise.
I was disappointed when Spalding held a food festival that the Europeans did not have any food stalls – what a missed opportunity for the two communities to come together.
I try to speak to people in a shopping queue – the Europeans very rarely respond. When they do it is a great experience in culture, chit chat and often humour.
Most of us (English) do try to communicate but it has to be a two-way effort.
I would like to give some of my time to try to help to shorten the gap between the cultures.