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Last Updated: Wednesday, 23 April, 2003, 11:07 GMT 12:07 UK
Blake hymn tops anthem poll
England football fans
Popular anthem choices are associated with sport
William Blake's Jerusalem is the favourite for an English national anthem, a survey suggests.

A St George's Day poll carried out by a digital music channel asked more than 2,000 people in England what song they would choose to represent their country.

The popular hymn won 51% of the vote, followed by two other religious choices, Abide with Me and Swing Low, Sweet Chariot.

All three songs have strong sporting associations - Abide With Me is traditionally played before the start of the FA Cup Final in May.

Jerusalem and Swing Low Sweet Chariot are unofficial supporters' songs of the England rugby team.

Anthem choice
1. Jerusalem
2. Abide With Me
3. Swing Low Sweet Chariot
4. All You Need Is Love
5. Candle In The Wind
6. The Italian Job
7. Great Escape
8. Angels
9. Vindaloo
9. Wonderwall
Source: Music Choice

Modern songs generally scored low marks, with Oasis' Wonderwall receiving only 1% of the vote and Robbie Williams pulling in 3% for his ballad Angels.

The Beatles came fourth with All You Need is Love gaining 6% of the vote.

While Scotland and Wales have their own national anthems as well as the UK's God Save the Queen, England and Northern Ireland do not.

Music Choice executive Simon Bell said: "It's odd that England doesn't have its own national anthem so we thought it would be intersting to see what the English public would want."

"Now the public have spoken, let's hope Jerusalem will be adopted as the true English national anthem," he added.

The digital channel will play the English national anthem Top 10 during several sporting occasions this year, including the FA Cup Final and the Rugby World Cup.




SEE ALSO:
New 'national anthem' aired
23 Apr 02  |  Entertainment
Anthem 'abused' at internationals
27 Mar 03  |  Northern Ireland
US musicians rally round the flag
02 Apr 03  |  Entertainment



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