UKHospitality has backed plans to extend licensing hours in England and Wales to 01:00 during celebrations for the Platinum Jubilee of the Queen.
The trade association has said that they could give Covid-devastated businesses ‘vital extra trading time’ during an extended four-day weekend of revelry.
Since last summer, UKHospitality has led calls for licensing hours to be extended during the specially lengthened Bank Holiday, June 2-5, to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s 70 years as monarch.
The trade association has now responded to a government consultation document on extending drinking times.
UKHospitality chief executive, Kate Nicholls, said: “As Britain’s longest reigning monarch, Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee is a rare and special event that millions of people across the UK will want to celebrate, and it will be extra-special for thousands of hospitality businesses hit by Covid-19, because it affords them a wonderful opportunity to recoup some of their pandemic losses.
“We welcome government proposals that recognise the role that licensed premises will play in the celebrations.
“We’re therefore urging the Home Office to go ahead with plans to extend licensing hours in England and Wales to 01:00 on the Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of the four-day bank holiday weekend.
“That vital extra trading time for venues will make an enormous difference, and go some way to helping them recover from the devastating effects of coronavirus.”
In order to give operators time to fully prepare for the event, UKHospitality is urging the government to push through extended licensing hours as quickly as possible.
Legislation exists that allows a blanket extension of licensing hours for ‘significant national events’.
Image: Louis Hansel