Republic of Anglia?

A letter in the Royston Crow…

Local fan of national sovereignty Peter Ranson writes of his positive vision of an imagined post-Brexit England, with or without Scotland as part of the UK.

But what is this “United Kingdom of England”, should the Scottish people decide to Take Back Control? There is another nation on the island of Britain, and the way things are going Wales will also declare that enough is enough when it comes to the UK.

As a member of the non-partisan movement Yes Cymru, I shall welcome Welsh independence with open arms and hearty singing voice celebrating yr hen wlad fy nhadau yn annwyl i mi. Wales may have voted narrowly for Brexit in 2016, largely down to the votes of white settlers, but it remains a great little country with a wealth of human and natural resources.

But enough of the Disunited Kingdom; let’s talk about England. Aside from Covid regulations which lag by a country kilometre those of Scotland and Wales, does England actually exist in any tangible form? As a country it has little in the way of national cohesion, and like many large states was only united through violence and the fragile egos of warring princes. Before that existed the Heptarchy, or seven kingdoms of Anglo-Saxon times, when proper Ænglisc was spoke.

Looking today at maps of population distribution, industry and natural resources, I envisage a thriving Heptarchy 2.0, this time with London as a sovereign city-state. The eastern region, with over six million inhabitants, would make for a perfectly viable independent nation. So how about a Republic of Anglia?

Whether in or out of the EU, but where out preferably members of a European single market and customs union, at least three and as many as 10 or more independent states could share this island of Britain as friends and neighbours enjoying full freedom of movement for goods, capital, services and labour.

That is the sunlit upland of which I dream. I just wish the Brexiteers would quit moaning about their inglorious victory, and begin to own the Brexit for which they fought so valiantly from their comfy sofas.

Viva Anglia! Viva Europa!

Dr Francis Sedgemore