Welsh Secretary Simon Hart says 'no' to making St David's Day a bank holiday in Wales

Calls to make St Davids Day a bank holiday in Wales have today been rejected Credit: PA

The UK Government's Welsh Secretary has said "no" to making St David's Day a bank holiday in Wales, despite a call for just that from the leader of the Welsh Conservatives.

There have been repeated campaigns for a public holiday on March 1st over the years but the UK Government, which is in charge of the decision, has resisted them. 

Speaking earlier this month, the Conservative Senedd leader Andrew RT Davies said:“I would like to see St David's Day made a bank holiday in Wales. It would be a wonderful opportunity for us to unite and celebrate our rich heritage and culture.“Sadly, Labour ministers in Cardiff Bay have failed to effectively lobby to make this a reality."Let's make it happen, and let's use March 1st to promote Wales across the world."

Conservative Senedd leader Andrew RT Davies

But his Conservative colleague, Simon Hart, has today (March 16) rejected that plea.

The Welsh Secretary told reporters: "I know Andrew (RT Davies) understands where I'm coming from on this and I understand where he's coming from. 

"My view is, I always probably try to have my thinking influenced by constituents, by businesses, by charities, by job creators, by investors, by visitors... the whole range of people who make Wales what it is and who contribute to our economy. 

"And I have to say that of the many representations I get on every subject known to man, the one thing that nobody ever asked me is can we please have more bank holidays? Literally no one. 

"Now whenever I've said that one person will then pop up on Twitter and say 'well I did' but the fact is .. there is no sense of impetus or desire...I've literally had no one coming and knocking my door and saying what will make a really big difference in the economic and social fortunes of our country is to have an additional days holiday.

"And as I say, Andrew and I have this very friendly and quite amusing and light hearted exchange every year. And one day much it may change but at the moment it doesn't look like it."