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Disunited Kingdom? What is Englishness to you?
April 18, 2008

Wednesday is St.George's Day, and on Sky News we're looking at England, Englishness, and the ties which bind Britain together.

There are plenty of ways you can join in.  We'll be asking for your photos showing the best & worst of England, but first watch this video, and then tell us what you think of it:

Watch Sky News all day Wednesday for 'Disunited Kingdom': get some more reaction to the video, and see if your views get on air!

:: In the meantime, upload your images of England, and Britain to

PS: We wouldn't want our friends in Scotland or Wales to think either that we are ignoring you or that we have confused England with Britain.  The series is concentrating on England because it is St George's Day this week, but we'd love to hear what Scots and Welsh think about England and The Union.

Written by Sky News, April 18, 2008


As a Scot working in England I have been to many towns and cities where English people (proper English people) are an increasing minority in their own overpopulated country.

Scotland is changing too; perhaps England and Scotland are now inappropriate names as they do not now reflect the different nationalities that, in reference to recent statistics, are set to become numerically dominant in the near future.

It is rather ironic however, that whilst British troops are defending our freedom in Afghanistan and Iraq, 100,000's of Afghan, Iraqi and Pakistani men sneak illegally through our borders and change the whole culture and safety of what was once England/Britain.

As a Scot, I am embarrassed by McClown, the damage that he, Bliar and NuLab (Numpties Use Levied Assets Badly) have inflicted on my country and the country of my English brothers.

Last Brit out, please turn off the lights.

for googness sick we all from planet earth english or scotish or african we all human being why make big fass about immigration let us not forget a reverse immigration too when many many bitish like the living in other foreigne contries around the world , its earth and each one of us own it so live and celebrate whatever you like where ever you want to be . half english men ,



My definition of Englishness has always been of a tollerant people, who will help the 'under dog' the best they can.
We have a high breaking point in most matters, but pity those that take us lightly,be it politicians,immigrants,countries or religious zealots(aka Henry v111).

I must admit in 20 years time in the UK the language might be English, but the people will not be English and when I mean by British I mean by British. The UK has no appeal as a holiday destination. In June 2003 I went to the BA Ferris wheel in London and asked a young lady (Chinese) at the shop nearby for a chocolate ice cream, she could not understand me and a lady from Turkey helped me....were is your English !!!

To John in London: The British government has been doing away with Wales for the best part of a millenium and Scotland for the past 300 years. You are obviously used to a bit more competence from government down there in your castles, well welcome to the real world. Now the English had destroyed Scotland long ago as what it was, outlawing our languages and culture and then our people from the land, who were forced to emigrate. The Gaelic language was seen as base and barbaric and a disgrace, something that needed to be wiped out. Scotland has 90% of the UK's oil supplies. Most of it is sent to London and the government make a fortune from it. Do you know how rare it is to hear a Scottish accent on TV, I mean a real Scottish accent not any pretendy London-Scot? That's why I think there is a massive problem with the media which does not represent us all. I can only speak for Scotland not for England but I gather that London and the South-east of England are where all the jobs are, where all the investment goes, with northern England always left behind.

Oh and by the way Derek England, Loch Ness = a big loch in northern central Scotland, containing more freshwater than all the lakes in England and Wales combined. As if you didnt know :)

Every St George's Day we get the same old question 'What is Englishness'? etc. etc. Yawn. I'm English and I don't feel the need to keep defining it.
Can we expect that on St Andrew's day the question 'What is Scottishness?' will be asked and on St Patrick's Day 'what is Irishness' and so on. Maybe on July 4th you could ask 'What is American ness' or July 14th 'What is Frenchness'. I would imagine you will get very similar answers.
How about 'What is Loch Ness?'

Today 25th April is Oliver Cromwell's birthday.
We should celebrate that as well.

If you are English you need no guidence in understanding what it means to you or how you feel about it...and you should have an awareness of your history...The English should have their own Parliament..In my view for far far too long..the English have made up the largest numbers of contributers to most of what is achieved by Great Britain..and when you realise 80% of the GDP is created and earned in the South East of England and what immigration has provided in real terms in this area understand why more and more English people regard 'Britain' and its governments policies as an enemy who is doing away with England..while still expecting English people to be the largest financial contributer to its kitty..whilst many quasi non English intellects seem only to willing to be patronising smug & take the piss whilst enjoying all of the benefits we overwhelmingly create..the fact that these people can then say what a huge contribution they make and anyone who dissents from this total lie is racist...just goes to show how disenfranchised the English have become whilst paying for the UK..amazing that a reality like England has been done away with by a 'concept' like Britain...I wonder how the Welsh & Scottish feel about the 'British' Government doing away with them?

People in England should be allowed to celebrate being 'English' without fear of being ridiculed or being considered anti-British. The problem appears to be how English people are perceived.I have lived in Scotland for the greater part of my life and have travelled extensively throughout England , Wales & Northern Ireland and unfortunately I've only experienced condescending anti-scottish /stereotypical attitudes in the south of England - there's nothing wrong with being proud of being English, but don't be arrogant or elitist - England didn't win the war 'Britain' did ! unless we 'all' are willing to put aside our prejudice we will never be a United Kingdom.

Why do you claim that St Andrew's and St David's Days are celebrated as opposed to St George's? After living all my life in Scotland, I have never seen any celebrations here on St Andrew's Day.

The English are used to having everything their own way to the detriment of those subjugated. The highly-Scottish Labour Government in London is a product of this twisted legacy which is swamping Scotland, the fact that people here are under the belief that Scotland is a joke and cannot do things for itself. The English are historically a very sneaky and dangerous bunch to deal with.

How ironic that England is up in arms now that things are turned the opposite way on them and current government setup is unfair to them. I agree that only English MPs should vote on England-only matters. But get a grip. Now that the other countries (Scotland Wales N.Ire) are asserting themselves, England is wondering why the spotlight is not on them for once, and I say scrap the union, good luck England but we should all have a massive divorce and party.

It would stop all this bickering once and for all. England stop swamping the rest of us with your biased media.

I wrote in earlier and have to agree with most of the comments posted. I now live in Spain but had it been different 4 years ago, would still be living in England. England and being English is not something you can demand, buy or self-impose, it is many generations of a family's history and it is a thing that you keep in your heart wherever you live. I hope one day the politicians realise the feelings aired today and make my homeland the place it was, with enough jobs for our young, an education system and a health service that is not giving way under the strain. Maybe then future generations will feel something like the pride I feel today.

It is you jack of norwich who is confused Shakspeare was ENGLISH NOT ENGLISH and you wonder why people get angry

What happened to the English? Uncontrolled immigration made you a nation of Asians and Africans. Good lord you even have Muslim Sirs in Parliament!!

I disagree with the person that said english people behave like a bunch of idiots. English people dont behave like that all the time with their football shirts. Just because we where football our football or rugby shirts dosnt mean everyone behaves like idiots. I wear my football and rugby shirts for my local footy team or my rugby team because im proud of what part of England im from and im sure thats how many other people would agree with that.

Love you England

The English say they are proud of their country but know little about it to justify their pride - how many appreciate Shakespeare, for example, whose birth is on 23 April? - his contribution to British and world culture is immense! I would be encouraged if English people knew more about what England and the English have contributed to the world, literature, science, legal system; while recognising some misconceptions - democracy, no that was the French, we still can't vote to decide on our head of state, or who legislates for us in the lords, or who is prime minister, that's all done through patronage and privilege. Many English talk in terms of race and being proud to be British, but the 'real' British are the so-called 'Celtic Fringe', Scots, Irish and Welsh, so what being English really means is often confused.

I am and always have been proud to be English. But I dispair of our rapidly declining national identity and lack of values that was once so much the core of English society.
I find it particularly disturbing that the St.George's cross now seems to have become synonomous with racscism for some. Thereby making it extremely difficult to fly the flag without worries of how others will interpret it. It almost feels as if I'm not allowed to be English, let alone have a St.George's day!
As a nation we've fallen prey to the ever so politicaly correct brigade to such an extent that it's now become "wrong" to show pride in one's country. Ireland, Scotland and Wales freely celibrate their country and it's heritage. But the English seem to be left to flounder in a sea of PC. England's rose is not so much watered as drowning.

Sky and it's St George's Day "idea of a celebration is to bang on about Little Britain and Britishness and this disunited Kingdom.
Get over it Sky, Great Britain, The U.K or whatever else you want to call it is over. Scots, Welsh and Irish CELEBRATE their national days- How about trying it Sky? It would make better television and show you are still in touch with the population.

We must leave 'Little Britain' to manipulating politicians and the media. It suits Gordon Brown to try to convince us we are all 'Little Britons. but it is time to forget the jolly old empire and colonial flag along with the deliberately contrived BBC ploy of using the title British when they mean English.
The English are here,they will stay here. We must always remember they gave their name to England when they invaded and occupied the land in 455 AD.
Most English people nowadays consider themselves to be English NOT British. How many more years do we have to keep saying this on St. George's Day?
I believe that none of our media actually KNOW how to celebrate St GEORGE's DAY properly. Thankfully the rest of England do, and this evening I shall be enjoying an English pint, a hog roast,morris men dancing and an English themed pub quiz.
It really is tiresome that instead of navel gazing that any channel can't celebrate with us isn't it?

I am English, proud to be so and have my English flag up today.
However, I always seem to be the only one in our street and I do feel that a lot of my fellow Englishmen and women are apathetic when it comes to showing national pride and are too scared of being labelled un-pc, racists or football hooligans. In fact, I am fed up of all the flak that we English have to put up with. Well, sod the local councils/PC brigade - just get yer flags out!!!

I am also married to a Welshman and we both agree that St. George's Day and St. David's Day should be made public holidays.

I am ENGLISH and VERY proud of it. I now live in the US and return to ENGLAND every year. On my last visit I hardly recognized it, I was looking at mosques where a local market used to be,I walked round the local mall and did not understand a word that was spoken by the local!!! population. I love ENGLAND wherever I may roam and I think that is the point,if you are truly ENGLISH you never forget what today means.
To all the ENGLISH people
around the world:

I am Irish and live in London and would only be delighted to see the english celebrating their patron Saint.The english always join in in our St Pat's celebrations and we would happily do the same. Who cares if he was Turkish. Saint Patrick was actually welsh!

I wish we would be more patriotic. Other countries are not afraid to celebrate their national days. It would be nice if St. George's Day was a national holiday. The only time when we are really patriotic is when England are playing in the World Cup for Football or Rugby. We should not be ashamed of who we are and fly the flag with pride!

Because of immigration, and multiculuralism, this country has gone down the toilet. Whereas where we once HAD a national identity, the Empire, and all that sort of thing, we no longer celebrate British history, in case it offends "ethnic minorities," because of the so-called bad things we`ve done. This country has done far more good than bad, anyday. WE shouldn`t say sorry for The Slave Trade-it was 200 years ago for goodness sake. Even Gordon Brown said a few years ago, that "The time for Britain saying sorry for it`s past deeds are over." Do you think he remembered what he said? I doubt it.

Having watched your item on St Georges Day. it was interesting to see the following live coverage of Prime Ministers Questions. I could not spot one Rose wearer on the Labour Side and even on the Opposition benches just a few on the second Bench.
It would be interesting to see the same House on St Pat's or Davids day!
Does this reflect the true feeling of our politicians regarding England and the English.

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