New Bank Holiday Date: Small Businesses Consulted
Small businesses have been called on to contribute to a government consultation on moving the May Day bank holiday to an alternative date.
The Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s Pre-Consultation on moving the May Day Bank Holiday, first revealed by the government back in March, suggests that the May Day bank holiday could be moved to St George’s Day in England and St David’s Day in Wales, or become Trafalgar Day in October. Tourism minister, John Penrose, said this would encourage local tourism.
The DCMS proposal has now reached the 12-week pre-consultation stage, and businesses are being invited to give feedback and suggest suitable dates.
Federation of Small Businesses spokeswoman Sophie Kummer, said that the response to the consultation, which will be looking at the overall effect of bank holidays on small businesses, is likely to be mixed.
“There’s not a cost for all small businesses [of having a May Day bank holiday], as some of them might benefit from people going on trips or travelling. Tourism is on the up by the time we get to May, so some companies get more business and don’t mind that there are two bank holidays close together.”
“But those that have to shut will answer differently. When people are off work it costs the economy and this can affect small companies badly.”
However, Kummer said that even businesses that may lose out financially can benefit, as having several bank holidays over a short period of time can be a “morale boost” for workers, allowing them to feel more productive.