England is the least patriotic country in Europe, with just one in three British people aware of the date of St George’s Day a survey has shown.
By Nick Collins
Published: 9:42PM BST 19 Apr 2010
Only a third of people were aware that the celebration of St George was this Friday, while forty per cent did not know why he is the patron saint, a study revealed yesterday. (MON)
Political correctness and a fear of appearing racist were said to be the main factors in the apparent lack of patriotism in England, along with the increasing influence of the European Union.
Six per cent of English men and women are “scared” to fly the St George’s Cross, while one in six fear they would be told to take it down according to the report, commissioned by This England magazine.
Twenty per cent blamed a broken society for their lack of patriotism, while half said they had been patriotic in the past.
The survey, which questioned 5,820 adults in nine European countries including Scotland, Wales and The Republic of Ireland, found that The Netherlands was the most patriotic European country.
Respondents were questioned on several aspects of national pride, with English people judging their overall level of patriotism to be 5.8 out of ten on average – the lowest of the nine nations.
One in four English adults said ‘political correctness’ had left them feeling ashamed to be English, while forty per cent said they felt England had completely lost its national identity.
Just ten per cent said they would happily fly the national flag on their house or in their garden, compared to more than a third of Dutch people, with more than a quarter saying they feared being called racist if they did so.
However, forty per cent of English people said they were happy to express their national pride in private, with a similar number saying they felt patriotic during big sporting events such as the world cup and the Olympics.
Three out of ten said they felt waves of patriotism in the wake of terrorist attacks on British soil.
Stephen Garnett, editor of This England magazine, said: ”We’re incredibly disappointed that English people are afraid of displaying the St George’s Cross on our patron saint’s day.
”It was quite shocking to see some of the results, particularly the amount of people that don’t fly the flag because of fear of being judged.
”It just shows what political correctness has done to the English people over the years.”
The study, which was carried out between the 7th and 14th April, was published to celebrate St. George’s Day this Friday.
Scottish people ranked their patriotism at 7.1 out of ten, the Welsh at 7.06 and the Irish at 6.72, while the Dutch were the most patriotic on 7.18.
Ireland was the UK nation where people were most likely to display their national flag.
Published in the Telegraph: