‘I am hopeful that much of this work will not have been wasted'

A VIRTUAL States sitting was held on Saturday morning to mark Liberation Day 75, with the Constable of St Helier calling for celebrations of Jersey’s ‘national day’ to be rolled over until after the coronavirus crisis.

Liberation Day 75 States sitting
Liberation Day 75 States sitting

Only the Bailiff, Timothy Le Cocq, Lieutenant-Governor Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton, St Helier Constable Simon Crowcroft and the Dean of Jersey, the Very Rev Michael Keirle, attended the States Chamber in person for the special annual sitting, with other Members joining in remotely via the internet.

During a speech to the Assembly to mark the occasion, Mr Crowcroft said that Liberation Day was Jersey’s ‘national day’ and that he saw no sign of it becoming less significant.

‘In the lead up to today, the 75th anniversary, there was talk of this being the last big commemoration of Liberation Day,’ he said.

‘I don’t think that it will be. There’s no sign of any diminished interest in the experience of Islanders during the Second World War, nor in what the end of Occupation meant for them. The ninth of May has become our national day, with more and more events happening each year, both at an island and parish level, attracting tourists to the Island as well as being appreciated and valued by locals, especially our young people.

‘Liberation Day for me is the day on which I derive the most pleasure that Jersey is my home.’

The Constable added that he hoped that preparations that were made for this year’s celebrations were not wasted and could be put to use once the crisis was over.

‘Our celebrations this year were set to be the biggest for many years and an enormous amount of preparation went into them,’ he said.

‘I am hopeful that much of this work will not have been wasted as the parties, concerts and community celebrations will be rolled over for a future date when we celebrate Liberation Day again.’

Before Mr Crowcroft’s speech, Mr Le Cocq said that the sitting was taking place in ‘unusual circumstances’ and that he looked forward to the Assembly being able to meeting again physically.

‘We have become accustomed to conducting sittings in this way over the past few weeks and it has been successful,’ he said.

‘We are all, I’m sure, looking forward to the time when the Assembly can be together in this Chamber in the usual way.’

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