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Last Updated: Thursday, 19 October 2006, 15:46 GMT 16:46 UK
MP's anthem call for Jerusalem
Rugby fan
Jerusalem is an unofficial song of England rugby team supporters
An MP is calling for Jerusalem to be adopted as the English national anthem.

Daniel Kawczynski, the Tory MP for Shrewsbury and Atcham, has tabled a Commons motion to debate promoting the song as the official anthem.

While God Save the Queen is played at official functions, it is regarded as the anthem of the UK and Commonwealth.

The Campaign for an English Parliament also backs William Blake's Jerusalem - an unofficial song of England rugby team supporters - for the role.

An online survey found 43% of respondents (479 people) chose Jerusalem over its nearest rivals - Land of Hope and Glory at 19% and God Save the Queen at 11%.

They always refer to God Save the Queen as the English national anthem, but it was composed and brought forward well after the Act of Union
Scilla Cullen
Campaign for English Parliament

They began searching for a new anthem after God Save the Queen was booed by Wales football fans during a World Cup clash with England at the Millennium Stadium in September 2005.

"We felt it was just not right," Scilla Cullen, secretary of the CEP, told the BBC News website.

She said the Scottish sports fans preferred to sing Flower of Scotland, while the Welsh preferred Hen Wlad fy Nhadau - Land of My Fathers.

"They always refer to [God Save the Queen] as the English national anthem but it was composed and brought forward well after the Act of Union.

"We feel it's no more relevant to the people of England than the Scottish and the Welsh feel it is to them."

She said Jerusalem always proved popular because it mentioned England and tapped into the memory of England as a "green and pleasant land".

But she had some doubts as to whether an MPs debate on the topic would prove useful - and would have preferred to see them debate an English Parliament.

Mr Kawczynski, who tabled an Early Day Motion on the issue, was not available for comment on Thursday.




SEE ALSO
Action call over national anthem
21 Mar 06 |  Scotland
Blake hymn tops anthem poll
23 Apr 03 |  Entertainment
Anthem debate call hits flat note
09 May 06 |  Scotland

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