French waiters told to brush up on their English.

Paris - Parisians are notorious for their attitude to tourists who can’t speak French.

But officials in the French capital have decided to encourage waiters, taxi drivers and other hospitality workers to brush up on their English to make the city more attractive to visitors.

Valerie Pecresse, president of the Ile-de-France region which includes Paris, said the area has seen a £900-million drop in tourist revenue since last year’s terror attacks.

“We are going through an extremely difficult period,” she said.

The £21-million programme is sure to infuriate traditionalists who want to protect the French language.

Apart from offering English classes, it will also recruit 1 000 English-speaking students as intern guides at tourist hotspots.