I wonder of any of my readers saw yesterday’s Mail on Sunday?

I don’t normally read the Mail, because I’m not a right-wing loony, although if there’s a copy laying around the office I usually nick the Sudoku pullout, and sometimes in the process I can’t avoid looking at a couple of the news items. Yesterday I picked up one of the complimentary copies in the gym, because there was a feature about the Queen which I thought my Mum would be interested in, and spotted somehting I thought would make a blog…

Anyone who’s been paying attention will know that I take my talking satnav everywhere with me – well, everywhere I take the car, anyway. A double page spread in the paper featured several of the ladies whose voices tell thousands of motorists where to go. Apparently, the voice of TomTom (which is the one I use) belongs to a half-Dutch half-English lady called Winnie, who as well as loads of voiceover work, works as an English teacher in a Dutch school. She claims to be astonished that so many male drivers find her voice to be sexy – I think it’s just because it’s one of the few chances we get to hear a female voice without being nagged.

The voice of Garmin is called Nadine, and she’s a former swimwear model who has homes in Cornwall and London, and who claims she’s rubbish at navigation because her geography teacher used to throw the blackboard rubber at her.

The real star, though, seems to be the TrafficMaster voice, who comes pre-installed in many cars, particularly Japanese ones: Her name’s Eve, and she’s famous to UK television viewers as the woman from the Ferrero Rocher ad.

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