View Full Version : Flying the flag.

22nd Apr 2006, 22:04
Looks like it's no longer an offence to hint that one is English.:ok:


St George's Day grows in strength
By James Clarke
BBC News, England

St George's Day - an occasion which not too long ago could arguably pass by almost unnoticed - is now being celebrated on a far wider scale, according to groups promoting the day.

They claim the desire to celebrate being English has seen the number of people who mark the nation's patron saint's day on 23 April grow significantly in the past few years.

The Royal Society of St George said people in England had begun to overcome the feeling they ought to suppress their sense of national identity.

The society was founded in 1894 with the intention of promoting "Englishness" and the English way of life. It now has 107 branches - many of them overseas.

'A bit put-upon'

Its chairman John Clemence said St George's Day had grown in prominence over the past four or five years.

He said: "It's increasing in terms of the number of people who are demanding that it's celebrated.

"The English have never taken a great interest in celebrating it because we are the dominant part of the UK, but the English are starting to feel a bit put-upon.

"I feel that over a long period the English did suppress their own identity."

The Value of St George Campaign was set up in the late 1990s with the aim of making businesses realise the financial benefits of celebrating St George's Day - particularly in the pub or catering trade.

Spokeswoman Sarah McGhie said: "A couple of years ago it just wasn't happening.

"I think people were frightened because there's so much negativity around English patriotism, but now it really isn't as bad as it used to be.

"People want to be patriotic and this gives them the chance to be patriotic."

Ms McPhie said research by one major pub chain had found St George's Day was now its busiest single-day celebration, behind St Patrick's Day and Mother's Day.

The campaign was started when the pub industry noticed many English people would always go out drinking to celebrate St Patrick's Day, yet did not even know when St George's Day was.

But many major towns and cities now organise events for St George's Day and Mr Clemence said the gap between the profile of the two days was narrowing.

"More people drink on St Patrick's Day maybe, but you would be surprised at how many events there are locally on St George's Day," he said.

"Some of them are quite spectacular, knights in armour on white chargers, that sort of thing.

"Last year I went to a service at Gloucester Cathedral and it seemed like most of Gloucester was there - it's the only time in my life I've seen a cathedral full."

The Royal Society of St George organises events of its own in London - it takes part in a ceremony of remembrance for England's war dead at the Cenotaph, holds events for members at Westminster Abbey and stages a party at Covent Garden.

Mr Clemence said: "We have a street party-type affair in Covent Garden, we did this last year after persuading the Mayor of London to make some money available for it - 15,000.

"The atmosphere was tremendous, it was a very pleasant day."

But while Mr Clemence welcomes the greater prominence of the day he is not among those who would like to see St George's Day made a bank holiday, although he admits there are many members of his society who are.

"Some of our members think it should be a public holiday but I think one has to take a step back and look at that.

"It would only be a public holiday in England and I think we would have to, out of fairness, consider Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, if they had support."

Mr Clemence said he thought creating public holidays for each of the four saints' days, even if they were each only observed in one part of the UK, would cause too much disruption to the economy.

Those behind the Value of St George Campaign have tried harder to win bank holiday status for 23 April, but they also admit defeat at the moment.

Ms McGhie said: "We've always got an ongoing debate about whether St George's Day should be a bank holiday.

"It would be great to have it as a bank holiday, but it's right by Easter and it's right by the early May bank holiday.

"So the chances of getting it as a bank holiday are regrettably not very good, but let's just at least get the day celebrated anyway."

But she said the fact the big day this year falls on a Sunday could help boost celebrations.

"I think in some ways that will be a good thing, because it will be a family day," she said.

"A lot of pubs do English menus and what better way to celebrate St George's Day than with a Sunday roast?"

22nd Apr 2006, 22:13
I shall be flying my flag tomorrow!! :ok:

22nd Apr 2006, 23:01
Tomorrow? I hope you flew it the day before yesterday...?! ;)

23rd Apr 2006, 13:13
<smartass mode on>
Today, 23 April, is St George's day ... 21 April is HMQ's real (as opposed to official) birthday :ok:
</smartass mode off>

:E :E

Onan the Clumsy
23rd Apr 2006, 13:29
Tomorrow? I hope you flew it today...?! ;)

Flying Boat
23rd Apr 2006, 13:40
I don't have a flag & am in Indonesia (Borneo) at present.

But my Rigs did an English Sunday Lunch with a St George's Cross Cake even though only a few English here.

The American, Aussies & Scots were happy to join in the fun.

PS it is not just St George's Day, if you believe the official info about Shakespeare he is 442 today (died on his 56th Birthday) & I am also 42 today.

I'm glad the English are now taking back their identity & country, England was becoming a pit of rubbish, I hope we get back to the days when "to hell with upsetting a visitor, it is my flag, my country & I'll fly it!"

Rant about stupid political correctness of our present society & small minded politicians over.

Have a good one, & the best beer for today is Bombardier (Cross of St George on the label).

For God, Harry & St George!


23rd Apr 2006, 13:49
the best beer for today is Bombardier
Ain't they Canadians?

Flying Boat
23rd Apr 2006, 14:15
Depends how you pronounce it.;)

23rd Apr 2006, 15:22
I'm glad the English are now taking back their identity & country, England was becoming a pit of rubbish, I hope we get back to the days when "to hell with upsetting a visitor, it is my flag, my country & I'll fly it!"For God, Harry & St George!

Flying Boat: My flag stood out straight when I read that!! :ok:

Pity there aren't more prepared to profess their patriotism and pride
at being English. But they will.