Tory who wants national anthem on BBC daily raised idea five years ago - Newsnight’s response was ‘brilliant’

Tory who wants national anthem on BBC daily raised idea five years ago - Newsnight’s response was ‘brilliant’

It turns out Tory MP Andrew Rosindell, who made headlines earlier this week for suggesting the BBC play the national anthem every day, floated the same idea in 2016 – and was duly roasted by Newsnight.

The Conservative politician, who represents Romford in Essex, raised the idea in the Commons on Thursday, when MPs were asking questions to ministers from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

“I know the minister will agree that the singing of the national anthem is something that provides [a] great sense of unity and pride in our nation.

“So in this year of the Queen’s platinum jubilee, will the minister take steps to encourage public broadcasters to play the national anthem and ensure that the BBC restore it at the end of the day’s programming before it switches to News 24,” asked Mr Rosindell.

Before heritage minister Nigel Huddleston got to the dispatch box to reply, Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries commented from the frontbench that it was a “fantastic question”.

Mr Huddleston added: “We fully support the singing of the national anthem, Her Majesty the Queen and other expressions of patriotism, including the flying of the Union Jack.

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“The more that we hear the national anthem sung, frankly, the better.”

Rather unsurprisingly, it isn’t the first time that Mr Rosindell has flogged this idea.

In 2010 he tabled an early day motion (EDM) to express regret at “the decision on the 3 October 1997 to play ‘God Save the Queen’ on BBC1 for the last time”, adding that “the time has come to reinstate this proud tradition”.

Demonstrating he was really in tune with the issues that mattered at the time, the EDM received a grand total of just 19 signatures.

However, it was Newsnight’s response to Mr Rosindell’s renewed calls in 2016 which resurfaced this week, when they honoured the Tory MP’s request…

Just not in the way he was probably expecting.

Concluding the episode, presenter Kirsty Wark said: “Before we go, you might have seen the demand by the Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell that BBC One should play ‘God Save the Queen’ at the end of the day’s programming, to mark our departure from the EU.

“Well, we’re not BBC One and it’s not quite the end of the day, but we’re incredibly happy to oblige.”

Except, playing on the fact that they hadn’t specified which version of “God Save the Queen” Mr Rosindell wanted them to play, the BBC Two programme opted for the rather controversial track by The Sex Pistols, released in 1977.

Far from containing triumphant fanfare, the song of the same name contains lyrics such as “God save the Queen / The fascist regime”, “she’s not a human being” and “there’s no future / in England’s dreaming”.

Cheery, that.

The clip, branded “brilliant” and “incredible” at the time, has since resurfaced following Mr Rosindell’s pleas in 2022 – and people still think the same:

Others questioned whether the BBC would be so brave as to do something similar again, five years later:

Either way, this version of “God Save the Queen” is certainly livelier.

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