Proposals for new Jubilee Bank Holiday every year to honour Queen

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The special bank holiday to mark Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee could become a permanent fixture in the calendar, with Chancellor Rishi Sunak reportedly looking into the idea.

England and Wales currently have just eight bank holidays a year, while Scotland has 11 bank holidays and Northern Ireland 10.

Across the EU, the average number of bank holidays per year is roughly 12.8.

The campaign for a brand new bank holiday has wide popular support, with PM Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie said to be supportive of the idea and both employers and workers’ groups expressing their approval.

Tony Danker, the Director General of bosses’ organisation the CBI, said: “Business is keen to support and we will work with the campaign’s supporters and employers to make it a real success.”

Frances O’Grady, the General Secretary of the TUC, told the Daily Telegraph: “UK workers put in millions of hours of unpaid overtime each year. But we get fewer public holidays than most of our neighbouring countries.

"An extra public holiday every year would be a great way to thank workers across the UK for getting us through these tough times.”

An inside source told the paper: “The Treasury is not saying ‘no’ off the bat despite previously being institutionally allergic to the idea of a new bank holiday.

“Rishi is supportive of the campaign and the thought behind it and has asked for all the projected costs.”

An official impact assessment suggests that while working hours would be lost overall, there could be a boost for the hospitality, tourism and retail sectors. The report also notes that there could be benefits for mental health and wellbeing.

There’s been celebrity support, too, with Bear Grylls saying: “The Queen deserves our thanks for her incredible lifetime of service, and so do millions more across the country for their own daily acts of sacrifice, love and support.

“That’s why this year, to mark the Queen’s 70th Jubilee, we are asking for a new bank holiday – a Thank Holiday.

“It would be a fitting legacy to the Queen’s extraordinary life and generosity.”

Nadine Dorries, a close ally of the Prime Minister, has launched her own separate review of the so-called “Thank Holiday” at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport.

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  • The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee

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