[excerpt] ...This is because US audiences tend to identify the British accent with notions of social standing and refinement rather than geographical location, according to London-based film critic Ray Bennett of the Hollywood Reporter magazine, who spent 30 years living in North America.
"I'm from Kent, and people would ask me if I knew the Beatles," he says. "They think a British accent is like that of Alistair Cook. They aren't particularly conscious of regional differences.
"To them, an English accent is, basically, one that connotes class."