A couple of points from a bit English/French/Irish person who struggles to play Irish music;
The way in which Irish music is played has and is changing markedly with time, listen to the old calieh bands and then the same tune by, say, Sharon Shannon. The way in which its played changes from county to county; try polkas in Kerry or a Highland in Donegal. We are led to believe that in the early part of the century Irish folk music nearly died; vis "Bringing it all back Home". The fact that some very good musicians worked very hard at keeping it alive made the difference.
If english folk is to survive then I have a feeling it needs more good musicians playing and updating it (the way its played) so that it sounds beautiful to the modern young ear. It wasn't so very long ago that a musical scale had only five notes. If we (the english) persist in playing the music in the "old" style because that's what's right - it think it will die and so to hopefully will the (nasal/tuneless) singing that oftime goes with it.