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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 March, 2005, 13:39 GMT
St David's Day - Have Your Say
1
Daffodils

With Welsh rugby fans on a high and the newly-opened Wales Millennium Centre championing Welsh culture, this St David's Day has particular resonance.

But how do you think the date should be celebrated?

Some people are calling for the day to be made a bank holiday, while others are happy just to wear a leek or a daffodil on their lapel.

This Have Your Say is now closed - a selection of your replies are published here.


I remember St. David's Day as a day of celebration at school with choirs, plays, songs, and recitations. It was quiet, dignified and very Welsh. I would hate to see it turn into the drunken day of kitsch and false sentimentality that St. Patrick's day has become in North America. I suggest giving parents the afternoon off so they can attend their children's school eisteddfod.
Stuart, Calgary, Canada

I'm not sure how it would affect me as I'm an Englishman who lives in Wales, but works in England. One of my kids is at a Welsh school (she was born in England), the other at an English Nursery (she was born in Wales). Sounds like more trouble than it's worth!
Richard C, Sychdyn, Flintshire

Just had a wonderful lunch in my work's canteen- a harpist followed by a choir. I think a bank holiday would be a nice idea but shouldn't just be an excuse to get drunk
Matt, Caerdydd

The Welsh Dragon flag flies from my verandah over a wintry, snow swept street. Inside, my wife and I are wearing the bright red rugby jerseys of the old Cymru, playing Welsh music and reminiscing about the eisteddfodau that we participated in, as students, at Tonyrefail Grammar School.
Les Robling, Port Hope, Canada

It's not unfeasible for businesses to function if Wales and England have different holidays for their saints. Scotland have different bank holidays to us, as does Northern Ireland. One day a year, when we have the fewest bank holidays in Europe, shouldn't be a problem.
Rhodri, Udaipur, India

Just had a wonderful lunch in my work's canteen - a harpist followed by a choir. I think a bank holiday would be a nice idea, but shouldn't just be an excuse to get drunk; every town and village should hold events and perhaps there could be a national choir competition?
Matt, Caerdydd

I'm not Welsh but I was named after St David and now live in Wales. Of course it should be a national holiday, even though I'd have to work on it as I am self-employed! Any excuse to celebrate should be taken!
David Thorpe, Machynlleth, Powys

Whilst I am a supporter of religious holidays, I believe the time has come to make an individual choice when bank holidays are taken. We should all be given the days at the beginning of the year and make our own choices what to celebrate. This would be beneficial for business and individuals.
Patrick, Cardiff, Wales

I have a big Welsh dragon flag draped outside of my window whilst Im here. Too cold for any flower here though let alone daffodils.
Craig Gordon, Moscow, Russia

It hasn't done the Irish any harm if anything it's been very positive for them. I agree with everyone on here in support of this. I love this land and care about my heritage and culture. Wales has one of the lowest amount of Bank Holidays in Europe! Besides the day could bring tourism and show off this the Country!
Carl, Caerphilly, South Wales

I drive up Denbigh over the streets of Cardiff, Cardigan Newport and Flint every day on my journey to Rosebank, every day is St David's for me as I deliberately drive through the Welsh Quarter of Johannesburg
Brian Roberts, Roodepoort South Africa

My kids get a day off school for any and every celebration. In recent years, I have taken daffodils and Welsh Cakes into school for the teachers who hadn't realised that Wales was a country... For St. Patricks' Day, Chicago boasts a huge parade and the river is dyed green. I have been suggesting a St David's Day Parade (equal rights for minorities) for years, a public holiday would give the ex-pat Welsh the recognition they deserve!
Alison, Chicago, USA

I'm not Welsh but I was named after St. David and now live in Wales. Of course it should be a national holiday, even though I'd have to work on it as I am self-employed! Any excuse to celebrate should be taken!
David Thorpe, Machynlleth, Powys

A day off would be great for the Welsh,because here in the U.S they have any excuse to celebrate,so go for it Wales, Mwynhewch,Cymru Am Byth.
Iwan Hughes, New Canaan,Connecticut,U.S.A

Yep I think it's a great idea. But I also think the national saint's days should all be hollidays, at the very least in their home nations. It seems ridicuouls not to celebrate them. In my own, admittedly biased, opinion the whole country should have Waterloo and trafalgar days off too. Do away with these arbitrary and anonymous bank hollidays, give us all something to celebrate!
Gareth Mottram, London, England

As far as I can see, the only clear argument for NOT recognising our national day is economic; worries over what would happen if Wales was 'closed' and England and Scotland 'Open'. This all seems like fuss over nothing, Britain is often 'off' when the rest of Europe is 'on' (and vice versa) and the national economy hasn't collapsed yet! Let's take this opportunity for England, Scotland and Wales to celebrate our difference!
Paul, Aberystwyth, Wales

I am carrying on the missionary work in Ontario to raise the image of Wales in Ontario Power Generation by having St David┐s Day recognised on the calendar produced for the workers. I am also wearing my rugby shirt, and boring everyone with how much better rugby is than the pansy game the Americans play.
George Blackmore, Canada/Wales

Just had a wonderful lunch in my work's canteen- a harpist followed by a choir. I think a bank holiday would be a nice idea but shouldn't just be an excuse to get drunk; every town and village should hold events and perhaps there could be a national choir competition?
Matt, Caerdydd

Of course Wales can have a distinctive holiday from the rest of the UK. Here in Belgium the two regions, Flanders and Wallonia have their own special days as well as a common national day. The CBI types in Wales who don't think you can have a holiday in one part of a country only are clearly talking nonsense.
Rhodri Thomas, Brussels, Belgium

It should be for us to decide whether to have a bank holiday. We shouldn't have to ask someone in London for permission.
Paddy, Cardiff, Wales

March 1st Saint Davids Day should be promoted as a bank holiday as it is the traditional start of Spring
Mal Gray, Swansea Wales

At the moment patriotic feelings are at a high unseen for many years which is definitely not a bad thing! There are days of remembrance and recognition for everything under the sun so a day where we can celebrate Wales in all its beauty, glory and turbulent history is a must. Oggy, oggy, oggy.
jo-ann , Llantwit Major

A day off would be great for the Welsh,because here in the U.S they have any excuse to celebrate,so go for it Wales, Mwynhewch,Cymru Am Byth.
Iwan Hughes, New Canaan,Connecticut,U.S.A

As a country we should nurture our welshness,having served in the Welsh Guards, no matter where we were in the world, we celebrated St David's Day,as other Welsh regiments do. "Dai's" day, as it is effectionatly know has,is a celebration of our identity and heritage, it epitomises all that is Welsh. by having a national holiday will be a patriotic outward sign of our inward love of our country.
chris, swansea Wales

Do you really think the majority of welsh people really care about welsh culture and history? All they want is another day off. This will never happen, so stop moaning.
Dave Cadel, Talbot Green

We should be given the day as a bank holiday and every village or town should hold a fate for the children to dress up and have fun. Northern Ireland has this. Come on life isn't just work, it's about living!
Rebecca, Bridgend

If all these people want a day off for St David's day then take a day out of their holiday leave. Bet not many people would bother then ?
Dave Richards, Pentrebane, Cardiff

How can we even call ourselves a proper nation when we can't even celebrate our national day in an adequate manner? No-one would dare question the Americans right to a day off on July 4th, or god forbid the Birthday of the Queen. Why is this different? Business people's ideals should not be the be all and end all of a nation's right to a proper national holiday.
Gareth Williams, Bangor

I was born on March the First 1949 in ST. David's Hospital Cardiff. I think a day off is a good idea, after all Saint David is our Patron Saint, and it would help put Wales/Cardiff on the map.
Alan David Pena, Brussels Belgium

It should be a National Holiday .I always take the day off on March 1st,wear a daffodil and answer all the questions I get about Wales.I play "Radio Cymru"all day and fill the house with Welsh Music and Welsh Baking.I also make sure that my family here in Canada do not forget about St. David's Day.Cofion gorau at pawb Cymraeg.
Beryl Duggan{Jarman}, Antigonish,Canada

Do you really think the majority of welsh people really care about welsh culture and history? All they want is another day off. This will never happen, so stop moaning.
Dave Cadel, Talbot Green

As an ex-pat now living in Lancashire, if there was a St David's Day bank holiday, could I take advantage of it, or by living on this side of the border will it mean I lose out?
Dyfed Bowen, Charnock Richard, England

I certainly think we should have St David's day as a national holiday. I think more should be done to inspire the Welsh to celebrate their saints day, but not just going down the pub for a drink, we should show more pride in being WELSH.
Bob Matthews, Llantwit Major, Vale of Glam

Not only should we get a holiday but all Welshmen should be given free beer! (this rule should apply in every country worldwide!) Cymru am byth!
Gareth, Amsterdam, NL (Ex - gog)

I'm sitting in university wearing a Welsh rugby top, everybody's saying "you were lucky on Saturday". More people need to know about St David's Day!
Rhys Wynne, Colwyn Bay, North Wales (residing in Liverpool)

No i don't think it would be a good idea as the weather isn't too warm and it could fall in the middle of the week
Ruth Evans, Carmarthen

We should have a public holiday and more should be done in the way of concerts etc especially now we have three world class venues in our great city of Cardiff. We are a proud nation and our cultural heritage needs to be kept alive for the sake of our children. Hope you all have a great day!
Steve Evans, Bodmin,Cornwall

March 1st is more than worthy to have a bank holiday, as is every patron saint in the UK, but this would mean different parts of the UK shutting down, would cause disrubtion. So, why not have a Saint's day at some point during the year. This would cover all the UK's patron saints and we can all party together
Aled Thomas, London

Even the lectures here have been cancelled, so today i can enjoy St David's Day, St David's Day should be a National Holiday, it is a day where we can celebrate our saint.
Edd Latham, Coventry but real home Swansea

March the 1st should be a Bank Holiday. C'mon sort it out!
Huw Davies, Cardiff, Wales

We are a very proud nation with so much history and culture - we should be able to celebrate St. David's Day as the Irish are able to celebrate St. Patrick's Day by having a Bank Holiday.
Karen Williams, Llantrisant, RCT

St David's day was always a half day holiday from school when I was a girl, the morning spent celebrating St David with a concert and then home at lunch time. However I think we should be proud of our Patron Saint and make 1st of March a Bank Holiday. We have so much to be proud of in Wales and yet we are always overshadowed by the other three countries that make up the UK. So lets be proud of our heritage and our country and shout it out.
Suzanne Koloumbis, Pontypridd, Wales

No i don't think it would be a good idea as the weather isn't too warm and it could fall in the middle of the week
Ruth Evans, Carmarthen

I remember dressing up in National Costume on St. David's Day at primary school. Other countries don't seem to celebrate their patron saint as much as the Welsh do which is a shame. I'm celebrating today with a daffodil on my lapel and continuing in my quest to spread the word of all things Welsh including Welsh cakes.
Laurie, Edinburgh

I think we should definitely have a bank holiday for St David's day as well as England having a bank holiday for St George's day. But I can't see businesses paying premium rates or giving days in lieu for this to happen & what would happen to businesses who have offices in both Wales & England ? It's a really nice thought but not likely to happen !
Monique Rowe, Cardiff

If you're self-employed, you don't get any holidays so one more won't make any difference
Keith, Chepstow

Of course it should be, why consistently in this country do such little things take so much effort and discussion?
Michael Williams, Ferndale, Rhondda, Wales

March 1st should definitely be made a bank holiday in Wales. When I was at school we used to get a half-day, I'm sure that employers could happily give at least a half-day, too. I shan't feel the benefit of any of this, though, as I live outside Wales!
Dafydd Young, York, England

The pride of Wales should not be restricted to rugby stadiums! Colwyn Bay is celebrating St. David's Day but many cannot go to the festivities because they are in work. Make March 1st a Bank Holiday in Wales!
Ian Saunders, Colwyn Bay, Wales

The company that I work for has arranged a wealth of activities for St David's Day including a dress down policy as long as some red is worn, sale of Welsh cakes, Welsh sport quiz and a raffle for prizes including a Welsh football shirt signed by the squad and Wales v Austria football tickets - donated by the FAW. All proceeds from the activities are being donated to the Princes Trust. I think I'd prefer to be in work with all these great activities going on than have a bank holiday!
Nathan Collins, Cardiff, UK

Both Paddy's and Dave's should be High Days, I think.
Keith, Leicester-welsh refugee

It definitely should be a bank holiday, Britain has less bank holidays than pretty much every other country in Europe, why not make each Home Nations Saints day a bank holiday for that country? And why is that the English are so ashamed of theirs? (Also, just to point out, he's Greek! Not English)
John Mayo, Cardiff, Wales

If you're self-employed, you don't get any holidays so one more won't make any difference.
Keith, Chepstow, Wales

I can't believe that Wales have finally beaten France at a rugby match.
Elizabeth Barker, Wrexham & Wales

Me and my husband have always taken St David's Day off as a holiday and we celebrate by doing something special. We may go to Sain Ffagan or do something else as a family. I strongly agree that it should be a national holiday to celebrate the Welsh Saint. It would be great if there could be a festival to take our children to in order for them to learn and celebrate with everyone.
Sian, Gilfach, South Wales

Of course it should be a public holiday! If we in Victoria get a day off for a horse race (Melbourne Cup), then surely the people of Wales should be able to celebrate the day!
Gareth Jones, Melbourne, Australia

Too cold for daffs here today - the snow won't let them grow, but I plan on buying a big leek on the way home and waving it at people in celebration. Then when I am home it's getting chopped up, cooked and slapped on some good old welsh cheese on toast :)
Julian, Stockholm, Sweden

I don't think we should make St David's Day a bank holiday as it would mean that local children wouldn't bother dressing up in our national costume and it would become just another day off school and work.
Rosemary, Aberystwyth, mid Wales

I would like to celebrate with a national holiday. Awoken by the peel of bells ringing in every corner of Wales. A holiday, yes, but with street parties and village festivals etc. It would be unique and wonderful for Wales, culturally and to promote our status as a nation.
David Fretwell, Ceredigion

Being a Welshman now living in England, it's hard to find credibility in the debate for St David's Day becoming a holiday. Purely because there is also a movement in England for St George's Day to be a Holiday. I doubt the English will ever get their wish either. In my opinion it all comes down to business. Welsh and English institutions both work the same hours on the same days of the week. It would be madness for Welsh businesses to close and English ones to remain open and vice versa. You can't have one half of the country come to a virtual stop one day per year and the other half on another day.
Reuben Leach, Wellingborough UK. (WELSH EX PAT)

It would be fantastic if there were official celebrations for St David's Day. A bank holiday would be great, but we would probably have to give up another of our bank holidays. I can't see businesses paying staff for an extra day, something would have to give. Why not make the nearest Saturday or Sunday to March the 1st the official day of celebration, the chances are it will fall on a rugby international day, and we can celebrate in style by beating our neighbouring rugby team.
Mark, Rhondda, Wales

My first memories of St David's Day are of being force fed leek soup in primary school, although I now see the day as another reason to pop down the pub!
Matthew, Bethesda, North Wales

Of course it should be a public holiday! If we in Victoria get a day off for a horse race (Melbourne Cup), then surely the people of Wales should be able to celebrate the day!
Gareth Jones, Melbourne, Australia.

If we had St David's as a bank holiday I am sure that it would evolve into a national celebration where there will be shows, singing, fairs and eisteddfods where we will all be able to celebrate our wonderful nation. Otherwise, it just ends up being another day at work, special though it is, but wouldn't it be nice to REALLY celebrate our beautiful culture and our proud heritage?
Bethan, Neath, Wales

Celebrate...Of course, why shouldn't Wales celebrate. Make a bank holiday? Why bother. Celebration does not need sanctioning.
David, Auckland, New Zealand

I look kinda silly here in Switzerland walking around with a leek stuck to my chest... They think I am bonkers. I had to apply for a new passport this week and yet again asked myself when we will have our own Welsh passport... What will we be doing today? Replaying the rugby videos, having a couple of beers and singing Men of Harlech loud enough to get ourselves deported.
Chris Wharton, Bangor (Living in Switzerland)

We should have a bank holiday. When I went to school in Cardiff, we always had a half day after the eisteddfod in the morning and you really understood what St David's Day was about.
Sandra Betty, Rhayader, Wales

It's about time Wales discovered it has a lot to be proud of - a day really isn't much to ask.
Lloyd, Hong Kong

I try not to work on March the 1st - there are no daffodils here at the moment, it's 30C. Australia has a public holiday on Australia Day, picnics , fireworks etc. Just remember you're Welsh, 365 days of the year.
Geraint Phillips, Ocean Reef, Western Australia

I shall be wearing my leek under the palm trees here and flying a little red dragon from my car's radio aerial and if anyone asks me what such strange symbols represent I will just have to try to explain. How different it will be two weeks later when the whole of the USA will know why some people are wearing shamrocks in their lapels on "St Pat's" day.
Richard T Jones, San Diego, USA

A bank holiday sounds fantastic to me, but then a day off always does! For now i shall just have to make do with our boss taking us all for lunch.
Claire, Cardiff

Hardly anyone in Japan thinks of Wales as a nation. Maps in school textbooks show no border between England, Wales and Scotland. Flags of the UK are labelled England too. While many people know of Scotland through golf, whisky and other products, there is nothing to put Wales "on the map". I would dearly love to see a national holiday to remember our beloved saint.
Steve Jones, Osaka, Japan

St David's for me was always an eisteddfod in school - a concert. Let's combine the best of Irish and Welsh - do what I'm doing on the weekend - a party and eisteddfod - drinks and let everyone get up and "do a turn" tell a joke, sing a song etc.
Ian, Miri, Malaysia

Sure give Wales St. David's Day off, but then England should get St. George's Day, Scotland should get St. Andrew's, and Northern Ireland should get St. Patrick's Day!
Tom P, Manchester, UK

I do think Wales should have a bank holiday on St David's day. I do celebrate in Canada with my Welsh cake baking, I also buy bunches of daffodils and spread them all over my home, and this time of year when the snow is so many feet high, I get to make cawl too! I'm afraid though I do not wear the traditional costume!!
Lorraine, Welsh Lady in Canada

Celebrate...Of course, why shouldn't Wales celebrate. Make a bank holiday? Why bother. Celebration does not need sanctioning.
David, Auckland, New Zealand

I bought a large bunch of daffodils for my wife and I also plan on sneaking into work early and anonymously placing a daffodil on the desk of every lady in the office. St David hides in the shadow of St. Patrick over here in the USA... that won't do.
Ray Thomas, Columbus, Ohio USA

It would be a great idea to make a public holiday out of St David's Day - but make it a DIFFERENT sort of day to a 'normal weekend-type day off'. Encourage the arts with concerts, street parties and a celebration of all things Welsh... Encourage tourists to visit especially, and those 'ex-pats' to come home.
Dr Gary Nicholls, Sydney, Australia

Currently living and working in Japan, my students are shocked when I tell them St David's day is not a national holiday. We have produced great poets, actors, singers and politicians, we should have the right to celebrate our past glories and our future contributions to the world.
Michael, Tokyo, Japan

I think the idea of Saint David's Day becoming a national holiday in Wales is wonderful... we need a day to honour our past and what makes us Welshmen... no matter where we are! I'll be raising a pint of Brains to Dewi Sant and all my fellow Welshmen near and far at Dylan's Welsh Pub here in San Francisco. I expect the antique mirror behind the bar will be decorated with leeks as usual and everyone will be loudly singing the songs of Tom Jones with the juke box. I dearly love it!
Bob Hughes, San Francisco, California USA

I'll be in the office here in Vancouver but I'll be in my Welsh rugby top, have a Welsh flag on the wall and some fresh daffs on the desk. It'll look just like home.
Brian, Vancouver, Canada

Hi, I'm in Byron bay in Australia at the moment and it's so wonderful to see Welsh flags and daffodils even over here. People are so proud to be Welsh wherever they are in the world. I have the three feathers tattooed on my shoulder and I've been absolutely amazed at the number of people who comment on it. Its wonderful. I miss Wales and can't wait to come home. I think Dydd Gwyl Dewi should be a national holiday, a day for everyone to rejoice in who they are and how proud they are.
Cari Bowen-Davies, Aberdare

My family celebrates St. David's Day by making lots and lots of Welsh cakes. We take them to school, work, to friends and neighbours and share a little bit of Wales with all that we know!
Melanie Eberlin, Aurora Ontario Canada

Just about every other country in the world has its own national day, and so should all of the four countries of the UK
Paul Mathews, Glasgow, Scotland

Sure give Wales St David's Day off, but then England should get St. George's Day, Scotland should get St. Andrew's, and Northern Ireland should get St. Patrick's Day!
Tom P, Manchester, UK

As a native born Welshman I say YES! It should be a national holiday. Now, if only we could get other nations to do the same and declare St. David's Day an international holiday!
Barrie Doyle, Beamsville, Canada

St David's Day should be recognized by all Welshmen. In the US and in Wales. In fact anywhere there are good devoted Welsh people. I am very proud of my Welsh heritage. In fact, I went to our St David's banquet just this past Saturday evening. Close to 100 people attended. Beautiful decorations of many daffodils, Welsh and American flags, the large Red Dragon flag in front of the room. We even had leek soup and a lot of beautiful singing - Welsh and English. Yes, why not make it a big holiday ???
Elizabeth, Ohio, United States

I think a national holiday should be the way to go. I mean in Wales ,St David's Day seems to be the least known of the saints days in the UK. It is and always was a great day and we as welsh should keep up the tradition and maybe make a pilgrimage to St David's city. I lived in Llanelli which was not a long way to go to visit the ancient place just to sit in the grounds of the cathedral and enjoy the old building and the sound of silence was fantastic. Better still if you visited on the First of March. So I say to all Welsh, let us have a revival of St David, the rugby is coming good so now is the time to lift the hiraeth for all Welshness and give thanks for just living in the wonderful country and being so close to your patron saint's city. Dydd Gwyl Dewi Sant.
Anthony Davies, Mandurah Western Australia

I don't think it should be made a holiday because my memories of St. David's Day involve eisteddfodau in school, and if this were to be a holiday these events would not happen.
Laura, Trelawnyd, N. Wales

First, Wales should celebrate St David's Day by declaring it a holiday, thus allowing the Nation to celebrate everything Welsh. Here in Canada, Canada Day is a National holiday, the US has something similar so why not the best country on earth?
As for me, I'll be in the office here in Vancouver but I'll be in my Welsh rugby top, have a Welsh flag on the wall and some fresh daffs on the desk. It'll look just like home.
Brian, Vancouver, Canada

How about a half day holiday like we had at school?
anon, Cardiff

I will be wearing my leek and sharing some home-cooked Welsh cakes with my work colleagues. and home tonight for a cold beer, but best of all playing Land of My Fathers in a normally quiet office. It would be good to be at home and celebrate with old friends.
Phil Taylor, Melbourne, Australia (Ammanford)

Give us a day off and a big party in Cardiff. It's the only way it should be celebrated! With singing, flowers, poems and BEER!
James Clarke, UK

I don't think it should be made a holiday because my memories of St. David's Day involve eisteddfodau in school, and if this were to be a holiday these events would not happen. I feel the welsh culture given to children would begin to decline.
Laura, Trelawnyd, N. Wales

I'm a student living in Portsmouth for eight months a year and I proudly wear my leek on St. David's Day. So will we students from Wales get a bank holiday????
Rhys Jones, Llantrisant

Born and bred in Cardiff. I'm proud to be Welsh now living in Birmingham I will wear my leek and daffodil with pride. We should have St David's Day a bank holiday. Cymru am byth.
Mary Villis, Birmingham, West Midlands

A public holiday in Wales would be the best way to mark St. David's day, as they do in Ireland (North and South) for St. Patrick.
Neil Mercer, Newport, Pembs

All the money spent on the assembly and they can't even give us a day off! Seriously, why have we not got a national holiday for our patron saint? Surely even the politicians can agree on this one. Don't they know they could get double time for working on a holiday!!
Martin Haines, Cardiff, UK

It should be a bank holiday! So the family back in Neath can have a day off. Of course I will have to work in the USA as they don't even know who Dewi Sant is. They know who St Patrick is though - it is one heck of a celebration here on his day!!!
John Hughes, Las Vegas, NV USA

I'm a student living in Portsmouth for eight months a year and I proudly wear my leek on St. David's Day. So will we students from Wales get a bank holiday???? HAPPY ST DAVID'S DAY
Rhys Jones, Llantrisant

St. David's Day should definitely be made into a national holiday. It is our saint's day and people who do not celebrate and wish to enjoy the day obviously are not proud enough to call themselves Welsh
Helen Sharp, Swansea




SEE ALSO:
Wales joins NY skyline
02 Mar 04 |  Wales
St David's Day celebrations
01 Mar 04 |  Wales


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