English woman wakes up with Welsh accent despite never going there

English woman who suddenly woke up with a Welsh accent appeals for medical help as she says ‘I think it’s stuck’

  • Zoe Coles, from Lincolnshire, speaks in a Welsh accent due to a rare condition
  • She has functional neurological disorder (FND), which  affects motor control 

An English woman is pleading for help after she suddenly developed a strong Welsh accent despite having never been to the country.

Zoe Coles, who lives in Lincolnshire, fears the distinctive accent is ‘stuck’ and won’t disappear after she began speaking with a Welsh lilt six weeks ago.

The pub worker, who originally developed a German accent before it morphed into Welsh, believes she has developed Foreign Accent Syndrome (FAS), a rare condition that changes how people speak.

While it might seem funny, Ms Coles says she has been unable to go to work and is worried something has ‘gone wrong up in my brain’.

She is appealing for medical help to deal with the issue, which could be linked to a neurological condition that has left her in chronic pain.

Zoe Coles woke up six weeks ago to find she had developed a Welsh accent despite never going to the country

She is appealing for help to find an expert or neurologist who can help her deal with the sudden change

#foreignaccentsyndrome #accent #myvoice #fyp #neurologicaldisorder #neurology

The Lincolnshire native, who worked at The Raymond Mays pub in Bourne, was diagnosed with functional neurological disorder (FND) – something that affects motor control and speech – last year.

Studies have linked FND with Foreign Accent Syndrome, but she is now on the lookout for help and has appealed on social media for aid finding an expert or neurologist who can do this.

It comes after she said she failed to get a referral to a specialist at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Speaking to the BBC, she said: ‘There are many FND sufferers but this accent syndrome… something has obviously gone wrong up in my brain, like something’s obviously not right, because who on earth wakes up speaking a totally different accent?

‘So I would like to work with somebody [who] can help me and then we can help others.’

Before the recent development, Ms Coles – who posts videos about how she copes with FND on social media – spoke with a southern English accent.

In videos shared on her TikTok account @zoecoles1, she reveals how she deals with the condition which leaves her in chronic pain and sometimes even causes her to lose the ability to talk and walk for periods of time.

But this latest development has left her even more frustrated, saying on one video: ‘I’ve just got this accent and it won’t go away, I think it’s stuck. I hoped it would just be a blip and I would get over it.’

Help a girl out #helpme #helpagirlout #findmesomeone #neurology #neuroscience #neurologist #doctor #medicalhelp #letshelpeachother #togetherwecan #fyp #viral

She told the BBC: ‘A lot of people ask me, “where are you from – Cardiff?” I feel like I have to explain to them what’s happened. 

‘It’s not really known about, it’s really rare, so people don’t believe it’s a thing.’

Ms Coles added she was willing to be a ‘guinea pig’ to get to the bottom of what’s causing her changing accent.

‘I would like to work with somebody that can help me and then we can help others. I want to help everyone who has this – I’m not the only person, but let’s start with me. I’ll be a guinea pig.’

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