Bar and pub opening hours to be extended for Queen’s birthday

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Opening times for bars and pubs are to be extended to mark the Queen’s 90th birthday, David Cameron has announced.

Although no timings have been agreed, hours will be extended on Friday June 10 and Saturday June 11 to tie in with national celebrations.

During Prime Minister’s Questions today, Cameron told MPs: “We will be extending pub opening hours on the 10th and 11th of June to mark Her Majesty the Queen’s 90th birthday.”

Brigid Simmonds, chief executive of the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA), said: “It is great news that the Government is taking this forward. I had written to the Home Office requesting that pubs can stay open to mark this momentous milestone for the Queen.

“On great national occasions such as this, pubs are the perfect place for people to come together and celebrate.”

Since the Licensing Act was introduced in 2005, hours have been extended for the Royal Wedding, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the World Cup. For the Royal Wedding and Diamond Jubilee, extended hours ran until 1am on the Friday and Saturday evenings.

According to the BBPA’s estimates, beer sales increased by at least 5% and food sales were up 8% as a result. This equated to a £20m boost to the pub sector.

In the BBPA’s submission to the Government, Brigid asked for an extension of hours until 1am on June 10 and 11.

The Assiciation of Licensed Multiple Retailers’ chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “This is a sensible move to allow pubs and bars to join in with a national celebration and will alleviate the need for many costly and time-consuming Temporary Event Notices.

“Pubs and bars demonstrated that they were able to open longer without problem during the World Cup, a fact that the ALMR raised with ministers earlier this year.

“Pubs are important social hubs and will be able to provide celebrations at the heart of their communities just as they did with the Royal Wedding and Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

“With the celebrations also coinciding with both Wales and England fixtures in Euro 2016, this will be a great opportunity for customers to relax and enjoy the day in the unique, celebratory atmosphere of a pub.”

The celebrations for the Queen’s birthday this year begin on Thursday June 12 with the pageant to celebrate the Queen’s life. On Friday there is a National Service of Thanksgiving, on Saturday The Queen’s Birthday Parade and on Sunday the Patron’s lunch.

“In addition, on Saturday evening, both England and Wales will be playing in the European football championships which gives an added incentive for pubs to do well,” Brigid added.

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