Page last updated at 15:58 GMT, Tuesday, 22 April 2008 16:58 UK

Staff given St George's day off

St George's flag
St George's Day was first celebrated on 23 April 1222

A patriotic boss has given his staff an extra day off in celebration of St George's Day.

Millionaire David Haythornthwaite is allowing his 120 employees an extra paid holiday, because he says the day should be celebrated by the English.

The 54-year-old heads the Tangerine Group, based in Lytham, Lancashire.

He said: "Every time you read the paper they say it should be a holiday. I decided to do something. If it encourages others, so much the better."

The business makes pet health food and other animal products.

All his employees, including some Polish workers, will get the day off, costing his business about 35,000.

'Stingy boss'

Mr Haythornthwaite, a member of the Royal Society of St George, which celebrates all things English, has promised to give staff every St George's Day off from now on.

Mr Haythornthwaite said a fellow business friend had already called him saying his staff were now branding him a "a stingy boss" for not doing the same.

"Everybody runs their company in the way they think best, some people only pay minimum wages.

"I'm lucky, I believe in St George's Day, I think we should maintain things English, I think it is important.

"If it encourages other people then so much the better."


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