We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

British/English accents in Ottawa

London, United...
Level Contributor
21 posts
Save Topic
British/English accents in Ottawa

Will be heading here shortly for a couple of weeks and I know some parts of Canada can have a fair concentration of Brits. I'm intrigued - how common is a British accent common in Ottawa? Personally I'd prefer to avoid them when travelling and experiencing new cultures. Any areas to avoid clusters of British bars?

Mentioned in this post
Canada
Canada
North America
Ottawa
Ottawa
Ontario, Canada
12 replies to this topic
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3,472 posts
146 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

Rare. You'll be fine.

Penticton, Canada
Level Contributor
19,539 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

Ottawa being the capital you will hear everything; more likely to hear Canadian french but depends in which part of the city.

Mentioned in this post
Ottawa
Ottawa
Ontario, Canada
Niagara Falls, ON
Destination Expert
for Niagara Falls
Level Contributor
9,936 posts
48 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

You are much more likely to hear French, English with a French accent or any number of other languages, than a British accent.,

Metchosin, Canada
Level Contributor
1,196 posts
590 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

As an FYI, it is even rare in places like Victoria or West Vancouver these days unlike 30-40 years ago.

Mentioned in this post
Vancouver
Vancouver
British Columbia, Canada
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
31,537 posts
62 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

See, now I was going to say there's been a *huge* upsurge in migrants from GB and Ireland in the last few years and there are a lot of Brit in BC these days it seems. Can't speak to Ottawa.

Mentioned in this post
Ottawa
Ottawa
Ontario, Canada
Metchosin, Canada
Level Contributor
1,196 posts
590 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

You used to have a lot of British retirees in the 2 examples above (and you used to see ads in local papers seeking others to campaign for their inflation-index U.K. pensions). I guess they've mostly passed on now. The younger actively working immigrants would be in Vancouver among other places but they're not as numerous now, comparatively.

Mentioned in this post
Vancouver
Vancouver
British Columbia, Canada
Victoria, Canada
Level Contributor
1,916 posts
155 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

We live in Victoria BC and rarely hear a British accent now, other than from older Brits like myself.

Interestingly enough, when we first moved here in 1984, I quite often heard a very British sounding accent from people who were born here! A few years later, I was transferred to Oak Bay, the most British part of Victoria, the border between Victoria and Oak Bay is sometimes called 'The Tweed Curtain'!

A customer asked me once in a sort of posh British accent "Are you English or 'Old Victorian. " I guess that's what they call themselves. I said that I was neither as I was Welsh! "Never mind" she said!

When we visit family near Toronto though, I hear a lot more British accents from younger people who have just moved there. My theory is that many Brits move there, as they think it's half the distance than say to move to BC !!

Mentioned in this post
Toronto
Toronto
Ontario, Canada
London, United...
Level Contributor
21 posts
Save Reply
8. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

Thanks for your responses.

Sorry about the wacky letters after the 'I'm' and 'I'd'. Something up with my phone perhaps.

Well I read the population of Canada consists of 2% British Born. But perhaps obviously this is mostly concentrated in the more English speaking areas. I know Vancouver has a lot of Brits and anecdotally I've known a couple of young Brits to work in Toronto.

Mentioned in this post
Canada
Canada
North America
Vancouver
Vancouver
British Columbia, Canada
Toronto
Toronto
Ontario, Canada
London, United...
Level Contributor
21 posts
Save Reply
9. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

As for Vancouver having a surge of GB and Irish migrants, this is interesting. I'd read there had been a decline of some sorts over the last decade or two across Canada in Brits moving here (perhaps because of other work opportunities elsewhere and free movement in the EU).

But Vancouver seems to perhaps be the most British-heavy major city in Canada.

Mentioned in this post
Vancouver
Vancouver
British Columbia, Canada
Canada
Canada
North America
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
583 posts
22 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: British/English accents in Ottawa

I don't think there are any 'Enclaves' of British immigrants in any Eastern Canadian cities (can't speak for the West). Immigrant enclaves seem to be for new waves of immigrants that don't necessarily speak English as a first language. For example, in the last century Toronto developed Little Italy, Little Portugal, Greektown, Little India. More recently, you can now find groups of Somali immigrants, Tamil, etc.

In my circle of friends, probably 30% of my friends have accents, ranging from British to Aussie, Portuguese, Spanish and French Canadian.

Canada is multicultural, and our cities in particular are home to many immigrants, so you won't have much luck avoiding people with accents.

Mentioned in this post
Toronto
Toronto
Ontario, Canada
Little Portugal
Little Portugal
25 Reviews
Toronto, Canada
Canada
Canada
North America
Reply to: British/English accents in Ottawa
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted
Get answers to your questions about Ottawa