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Police boss calls for St David’s holiday

Created on 22/02/2018 @ 11:13
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The debate as to whether there should be a national holiday to celebrate St David’s Day has been reignited by the Dyfed-Powys Police and Crime Commissioner.

Dafydd Llywelyn is urging Prime Minister Theresa May to give Wales new powers to make St David’s Day a public holiday, saying that it’s only right that the people of Wales should be allowed to celebrate the national day properly.

That would enable the Welsh Government to follow the precedent set in Scotland in 2006 when the Scottish Parliament designated November 30, St Andrew’s Day, as a national holiday.

In Scotland though banks are not required to close and it is up to employers to decide whether to give staff the day off – if November 30 falls on a weekend the next Monday is a holiday instead.

Arfon Jones said: “St David’s Day is our national day and I believe that we should introduce it as a holiday to celebrate our status as a nation.

Mr Llywelyn said: “The four Comnmissioners and the four Chief Constables, as employers of tens of thousands of people in Wales, should lobby the Assembly for this change to be introduced.

“I believe there is a great deal of support for the idea of creating a new official holiday to celebrate our patron saint’s day.

“It is not a great legislative issue and there is no real barrier to creating a new holiday in Wales.

“It would be a flagship day for our national pride and a mark of our maturity as a nation.”

Last month, Powys County Council voted against the idea of supporting a holiday, saying it would cost the cash strapped council hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Who was St David?

St David was born circa 542AD at Menevia, which is now called St David's. He is traditionally believed to be the son of Saint Non and the grandson of  Ceredig ap Cunedda, king of Ceredigion.

He was the founder, abbot and bishop of the monastery and was responsible for much of the spread of Christianity in Wales. 

Much of David’s life is shrouded in mystery but he was once believed to be a nephew of King Arthur on his mother's side and stands today as a symbol of Welsh resistance against the Norman Conquest. He is also recognised as the patron saint of doves.

Miracles associated with David include the Synod of Llanddewi Brefi - where he raised a hill up from the ground so that his followers could better hear a sermon – restoring sight to the blind St. Paulinus and bringing a dead boy back to life with his tears

His teachings drew pilgrims from Ireland and from Europe. It is believed he died in 601AD.

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