A lot of people like hymns because if their uplifting tunes and often sing the words with little recognition of their meaning. Jerusalem is like this.
Personally I think the words of Jerusalem are heavily laiden with Christian references.
The socialist connection is puzzling as the hymn is popular with public schools and some of these consider the hymn to be their school anthem. Perhaps the Labour Party acquired the hymn as many of their leaders had been to public school.
Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone.-------- Original message --------From: John Clark <[log in to unmask]> Date: 2016/01/29 11:40 (GMT+00:00) To: [log in to unmask] Subject: Re: [BRITARCH] English National Anthem
See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_anthem_of_England for various candidates.
'Land of Hope and Glory' is about Britain and the British Empire - so hardly a candidate for English national anthem. (Unless you're one of those people who blame all imperialism on the English.)
'Jerusalem' - John Wood wrote >Its religious message doesn't reflect the view of many in England<. It's not really religious, unless you regard Blake's peculiar mythology as Christian. It's still sung at Labour Party conferences. We played it at my dad's funeral - he was communist and atheist.
If 'Land of Hope and Glory' is excluded as being too imperialist, we probably have to exclude 'Jerusalem' as being too socialist.