Suffolk: Celebrity gives his backing to campaign to reinstate Edmund

St Edmund out and about in Bury St Edmunds trying to get signatures for the e-petition to have him

St Edmund out and about in Bury St Edmunds trying to get signatures for the e-petition to have him restored as Patron Saint of England. - Credit: Archant

Celebrity farmer and TV presenter Jimmy Doherty has thrown his weight behind a campaign to reinstate St Edmund as England’s patron saint.

Jimmy Doherty

Jimmy Doherty - Credit: Archant

The Wherstead-based farmer, who produces rare breed pigs, has revealed that he will rename his St George’s sausage in honour of the former King of East Anglia.

The move comes as St Edmund returned to Bury – his hometown and alleged resting place – to encourage shoppers to sign the St Edmund for England e-petition.

Mark Murphy, a presenter on BBC Radio Suffolk who organised the signature drive on the Cornhill yesterday, said: “It’s great to see that even St Edmund himself is helping with the e-petition and encouraging shoppers in Bury St Edmunds to help him get his old job back as patron saint of England. I bet St George couldn’t use an iPad.”

Mr Murphy said he was thrilled to have the backing of Jimmy Doherty for the campaign.

“To have someone as high profile as him supporting St Edmund is fantastic.

“I’m so pleased the St George sausage has been ousted in favour of the St Edmund banger – let’s hope the same happens to St George.”

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Mr Murphy also thanked Greene King for kick-starting the campaign, which was officially launched by the brewer at the start of June.

Mark Blythman, Greene King strategy and communications director, said: “We last saw St Edmund in the town for the launch of the St Edmund for England campaign and it is great to see him back again.

“We are nearly two months into the campaign and already we have a great deal of support from MPs, historians, and businesses, the people of Suffolk and of course, the East Anglian Daily Times.

“We have got some great activities lined up that everyone can get involved in and now have mugs and t-shirts to support the campaign on sale in our Greene King visitors’ centre shop.”

The e-petition currently has more than 1,800 signatures but needs to hit 100,000 to be discussed in parliament.

Jimmy, who has been travelling in Hong Kong and Thailand, was unable to comment on his backing for the campaign yesterday.

If you wish to sign the e-petition, visit www.edmundforengland.co.uk.

You can follow the campaign on Twitter @TheSaintEdmund and on facebook at wwwfacebook.com/ StEdmundForEngland.

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