J-P Wooding: Give St George a holiday

Make St George's Day a bank holiday, says J-P
Make St George's Day a bank holiday, says J-P

Our days are in danger of losing their meaning.

I thoroughly enjoyed the self-examination and consideration of my repentance needs that frying some batter, drizzling syrup on it and eating it gave me on Tuesday.

That is what Shrove Tuesday is about, isn’t it?

It is becoming more and more important to carefully monitor the English language and how it is changing (due to many reasons including text-speak and social media) before we lose sight and sound of it.

Of course language and dialects change over the years but simple things like using correct terms for events and occasions may help to keep some tradition present in our native tongue.

Shrove Tuesday is one example; I would bet that 75 per cent of people would call it Pancake Day.

Yes, we eat pancakes as a tradition on that day (I do too) but why do we no longer instantly call it Shrove Tuesday?

Is it because religion is being pushed further back because of a lack of followers, or perhaps a combination of this and the change in terminology as time goes on?

Changes in speech have also dictated that Mothering Sunday seems to have become Mother’s Day.

St Valentine’s Day has been abbreviated to Valentine’s Day.

Christmas has become Xmas for a large majority too. I am guilty of many of these ‘errors’ and so it is becoming a lesson to me to just think a little bit when I speak or write using our wonderful language.

Perhaps it is right for language to evolve but not so much for original titles to change, whether they have religious connotations or not; whatever its meaning, why change it?

Things aren’t helped by the seemingly endless barrage of National Chip Weeks and International Smile Days or similar events.

More and more of these occur and have diluted their environment so much that I suspect many of us ignore their proclamations and issues.

They can stereotype the more important awareness subjects, causing these to become forgotten like the others.

There is, however, one “day” which should have national recognition: St George’s Day.

It is celebrated by many but it doesn’t have the proper recognition that a bank holiday would surely bestow.

The Prime Minister has acknowledged that the day has been “overlooked” but still nothing happens.

Perhaps some quarters are too scared of the implications of the conformation of an official, national England day. Are they too afraid to cause offence?

Watch your language and raise a glass on April 23. Oh, and happy Chocolate Mint Day. Ridiculous.