Pubs packed with people wearing patriotic colours, waving flags and drinking a pint of the nation’s favourite drink is a scene commonly seen on St Patrick’s Day – but why not on St George’s Day? BEN COULBECK reports
TOMORROW marks the start of the weekend for most people but for patriots and those who enjoy a pint of real ale it can be one of the highlights of their social calendar.
The Irish and seemingly most of Britain celebrate St Patrick’s Day every year with Guinness being bought by the tanker load in every corner of the country, yet most of these drunken revellers have little or no connection to Ireland at all.
It begs the question that if St Patrick’s Day can be marketed so successfully that non-Irish citizens take time off work to celebrate it, then surely the same can be done for St George and England?
With the General Election just around the corner, voters’ letter boxes are being stuffed with political promises on issues such as the economy, employment, education and immigration.
Politics and the future of the country is the hot topic of debate so it looks certain that for another year, St George’s Day will pass by without much of a ‘cheers’.
But vital votes would surely be gained by the first party to announce that they would make St George’s Day a national holiday.
In fact millions across the country always revel in taking full advantage of Bank Holiday weekends so why not give the long-suffering tax payers another, while giving the country a welcome boost in pride and beer sales?
The recession, the MPs’ expenses scandal, the long bleak winter and now a volcanic ash cloud has made the public mood somewhat glum.
But perhaps its time for people to turn things around themselves and in doing so raising a glass to St George and England, remembering the reasons why living in this country is a privilege.
Pubs across the city and the county, Cheshire West and Chester Council, the Diocese of Chester, local tourist attractions and businesses are all united in flying the St George’s Cross.
It seems the one person missing from the St George’s Day party is Mr Joe Public.
Cheshire bishop Peter Forster concludes: “Let the bells ring out in celebration of England and St George. We are living through a period of considerable anxiety, so now is a good time to reflect on how fortunate we are to have lived in a country as beautiful and as committed to liberty as England.
“England means different things to different people but, like the whole of the Earth, England is a gift from God, to be enjoyed by all who live here, regardless of creed, colour or anything else. We really ought to celebrate England in all its diversity and thank the Lord for what we have in our country.”