Saturday 29 April 2017

The Saturday List #127 - 10 dates for new Bank Holidays

There has been much ridicule in the press of Jeremy Corbyns suggestion for four new bank Holidays. I hadn't realised that Jeremy Corbyns suggestion was to celebrate the four patron saints of England, Wales Scotland and Ireland. For me, this completely changes the dynamics of the suggestion. I think it is a great idea as it would help us all to become more aware of the other parts of the Union. But are these the best dates? I thought that maybe we need a full list of all potential bank holidays, so we could perhaps have and informed discussion. Let's start with Jezza's then move on to Rogs!

My view is that we need a couple more. We should do a 4 year cycle of the national days and have one in the Autumn and maybe one in late June or Early July.

1. St George's day - April 23rd. A great suggestion for the English, I firmly believe this should be a public holiday in England. Not quite sure how the Scots and The Irish would take to it though.

2. St Patricks Day - March 17th. As someone of Irish Heritage, I always celebrate this, usually with a few pints of Guinness and an Irish band (ideally the Pogues). However, knowing Irish culture, maybe March the 18th would be a better day, so we can all recover from our hangover.

3. St Davids Day - 1st March. Celebrated in Wales with Daffodils and leeks. Not quite sure whether this will catch on in London. It would be good to know a bit more about our Welsh brothers though, so maybe with a bit of thought it could catch on.

4. St Andrews Day - 30th November. There are two great reasons for this one. Firstly it is in November, which is in the middle of a bank holiday drought, which starts at the end of August and only finishes at Xmas. As well as Scotland, St Andrew is the patron saint of  CyprusGreece, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, BulgariaSan Andres Island, Colombia, Saint Andrew, Barbados and Tenerife.  This means that a whole bunch of different cultures can be covered.

5. Armistice Day - 11th November. I think it is a national scandal that Armistice day is not a bank holiday and day of national mourning. I firmly believe that we need reminding of this. If  ever I was Prime Minister, I'd pass a law that EVERY TV station and radio station covered the Remembrance Sunday service and observed the two minutes silence.  It really is the least we should do.

6. World Cup Day -  30th July.  We are bad at celebrating National Achievements. What greater sporting achievement is there than Englands victory in the World Cup. Of course, the Scots don't really celebrate that. I suppose it could be a day of mourning up there.

7. Bob Marley Day - 6th Feb - We don't have a day that celebrates the joy of music, the many cultures that make up our country, the huge contribution of the Commonwealth and the history of people coming to the UK and chaning the world. Bob Marley is such a man. I can think of no one more deserving.

8. Winston Churchill Day -  30th November (his Birthday).  Churchill is the greatest Prime Minister ever. He saved the world from the evil scourge of Nazism. There should be no argument about this at all. Same day as St Andrews day, but I'm sure the Scots wouldn't mind!

Amy Johnson portrait.jpg
Amy Johnson
9. Amy Johnson day - 1st July (her anniversary). What better day could we have than a day to celebrate a fearless woman who showed that there really are no boundaries to what can be achieved if you are prepared to try. Everyone in the country should know the tragic story of Amy Johnson.

10. Brunel Day - 15th September (his anniverary). One of the things the UK should celebrate, but doesn't is our amazing engineers. Of these Isambard Kingdom Brunel is perhaps the greatest. As far as I'm concerned, they should teach children about the achievements of engineers such as Brunel, Frank Whittle and scientists such as Alexander Fleming who discovered penicillin, rather than Kings and Queens who lived it up at the expense of the ordinary people in history.

 So you may wonder. What are my choices. I'd be happy to celebrate any of them, but if I had to pick two, it would be Amy Johnson day in July and Armistice day in November. Both should be commemorated and both are at times when there are not normally holidays, so we could all do with a break. Personally I'd move May 1st to Amy Johnson day. I know it is an iconic day in the Labour movement, but there are just so many bank holidays around April/May. We could do with a break when the weather is warmer and we could appreciate it more. What do you think?

1 comment:

CalvinCasino said...

It is very good idea to have bank holidays.

It is a shame that the right wing press did ridiculed Corbyn's idea to have 4 bank holidays.