HC Deb 30 March 1976 vol 908 cc442-3W
Mr. MacNamara

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement about the introduction of a May Day bank holiday and other plans for granting additional or alternative bank holidays.

Mr. Foot

The Government have decided to institute a May Day bank holiday starting in 1978. As already announced, there will be an additional bank holiday in 1977 in celebration of the Queen's Silver Jubilee.

The Government also intend to make the necessary additional arrangements to provide a holiday in lieu whenever a bank holiday or other public holiday falls on either a Saturday or a Sunday with effect from Christmas Day and Boxing Day 1976 and New Year's Day 1977.

The Government will begin consultations shortly with the TUC, the CBI and the banks as to whether the May Day holiday should be fixed on 1st May or the first Monday in May and which days should be taken in lieu of those holidays falling at the weekend for which provision is not already made in the Banking and Financial Dealings Act 1971.

Separate consultations will be held in Northern Ireland and Scotland where, by tradition, public holidays are arranged on a local basis and bank holidays are not necessarily observed as general public holidays.