By Scott Shepherd
Patriotic Scots are calling for a bigger celebration on St. Andrew’s Day.
A study by The Famous Grouse showed that eight of ten Scots thought the day would be a great chance to reflect on Scottish traditions and be proud of our successes.
Those who took part in the poll said they wanted Scotland’s patron saint to become as popular as St Patrick – a day which is celebrated worldwide.
In the study of over 1000 Scots, the definite message was for St. Andrew’s Day to be a reason to celebrate the vitality and success of Scotland.
Gerry O’Donnell, Director of The Famous Grouse said: “We are delighted that so many Scots are calling for St. Andrew’s Day to be made a more celebrated occasion nationwide.”
“We urge Scots around the globe to get behind St. Andrew’s Day and make this celebration as important a date on the calendar as St. Patrick’s Day has become.”
Iain Emerson, editor of the Tartan Army magazine believes that the celebrations could have a link to sport.
He said: “If Scotland showed the same enthusiasm on St. Andrew’s Day as we do when doing well in sporting events then the celebrations would be massive. We should be proud to celebrate Scotland on a larger scale.
“Ireland has got it right with St. Patrick’s Day so it is up to Scotland to embrace the holiday and be proud of our nation. I think it is a great idea for it to become a national holiday – it will encourage national pride and identity even more.”
Almost two thirds of those taking part in the survey thought that the November 30th celebrations were the perfect opportunity to celebrate the nation’s pride in being Scottish.
And the nation’s requests for St. Andrew’s day to become more celebrated have not gone unnoticed.
The Scottish Government is stepping up its campaign to make St. Andrew’s day a national celebration.
Scotland’s culture Minister Linda Fabiani spoke out earlier this year after the success of the Government run winter festival.
She said: “St Andrew’s Day is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate Scotland’s proud national identity, steeped in rich culture and history. The Scottish Government is leading the way to build this into a true cultural celebration for all to enjoy.”
This year’s Winter festival will begin on St Andrew’s Day.
The Scottish Parliament declared November 30th a national holiday for their staff in 2007 and the Scottish Government are likely to follow suit this year according to Ms Fabiani.
A VisitScotland spokesman said: “This will be the ideal opportunity to highlight and celebrate St Andrews Day and to celebrate Scotland’s proud national identity ahead of Homecoming Scotland and the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the birth of Robert Burns.
“Scotland is famed for its rich heritage and culture and this will be exemplified with the added celebrations.”