12 July could be England Day - or Athelstan Day - as a celebration of a nation
Perhaps 12 July should be Athelstan Day, or even England Day. It would be quite a good day for a national holiday - after School and other exams are over and about the beginning of the Summer holiday period - and with a chance of good weather and sunlight until late into the evening. It is also a reasonable time away from the existing end of May and end of August bank holidays.
An Inclusive 'England Day'
From the outset I would want any England Day to be inclusive. It is certainly not about Xenophobia or prejudice but is to celebrate a wide definition of English culture, history, success, tradition and the future. As well as those whose recent ancestry have been English and lived in England, this includes those who have made England their home from elsewhere in the World. And also for those the English those who have settled overseas during the last few centuries, and probably outnumber the 45 million or so still in England; a similar number (maybe more) in the USA and 6 million in each of Canada and Australia/New Zealand - and many other places in the World (see following link - which is also a fascinating summary of English genetic ancestry, history, etc.) As with other nationalities (e.g. those from Scotland, Ireland and Wales), the aim is to understand and celebrate a heritage - but not in any way negative to any other culture.
12 July 2013 will be the 1086th anniversary!
And 2014 - Scottish devolution?
Having arguably been born on 12 July 927, the state of England also included Wales from 1284 - but still a nation state. On 1 |May 1707 it ceased to exist on the creation of the Kingdom of Great Britain, including Scotland. Depending on the planned referendum on Scottish independence in 2014, it is possible that a state of England could emerge again....
What about St Georges Day?
St George was not English - and is far from exclusive to England as patron Saint. More practically, 23 April would not be a good national holiday in view of its position between Easter and the May bank holidays. Mid July would be much more suitable.