11th March 1801
Jersey anthem composer is born
Frédéric Bérat composed and wrote the lyrics to Ma Normandie, Jersey’s national anthem. He was born in Rouen on 11 March 1801.
The anthem actually relates to Normandy in France, rather than Jersey itself, although it has some relevance in so far as the Channel Islands were part of Normandy prior to William the Conqueror’s invasion of Britain and might have been returned to France had they not chosen to side with Britain in 1204.
However, the States of Jersey responded to suggestions that the island should find its own, more appropriate anthem in 2007 by running a competition to find an alternative. On 1 May the following year, Island Home by Gerald le Feuvre was selected as the winner. However, it needed to be ratified in the States, which turned out to be a hurdle as it possibly wasn’t as popular as the competition result suggested and there were calls for Beautiful Jersey, one of the other finalists, to be adopted in its place.
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