Leader: ‘It’s a cause worth persevering with’

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So what did you do to celebrate St Andrew’s Day? Perhaps you visited Edinburgh Castle or one of our other great city visitor attractions offering free entry to celebrate our national day.

So what did you do to celebrate St Andrew’s Day? Perhaps you visited Edinburgh Castle or one of our other great city visitor attractions offering free entry to celebrate our national day.

Or perhaps you did nothing at all. Maybe you didn’t even remember the significance of the date.

It is no surprise that the St Andrew’s Day celebrations will have largely passed most of us by.

They are, after all, a relatively new idea, introduced by former First Minister Jack McConnell, as another way of promoting Scotland at home and abroad.

The aim was always to copy the success of St Patrick’s Day, which sees Ireland and Irish products like Guiness celebrated around the world. The economic potential is there for all to see.

The fact that St Andrew’s Day comes at the end of November, when we are all beginning to batten down the hatches for winter doesn’t help to fan the flames of patriotic enthusiasm.

In fact, this is one area where we have cause to envy our English cousins, who celebrate their national day, St George’s, with growing vigour, in the relative warmth of late April.

Creating a new tradition, for that is what successive Scottish governments, both SNP and Labour-led have attempted to do, is never going to be a quick process. Doing it in the gloom of a Scottish winter makes is doubly difficult.

Is it a lost cause? Before giving up on St Andrew’s Day festivities perhaps we should look across the Atlantic to the United States where they have just celebrated Thanksgiving Day with their usual gusto.

It is a cause worth persevering with.

After all, there is much to be potentially gained for the Capital’s vital tourist trade.

And, don’t forget, whether we support independence or not, we have a lot of reasons to celebrate just because we are Scottish.