Euro 2024

Plans to keep pubs open longer if UK nations reach Euros semis

The government has unveiled proposals to potentially extend pub and bar licensing hours for the semi-finals and final of the men’s European Football Championships next year. If England, Wales, or Scotland make it to the latter stages of the tournament, the government aims to stretch licensing hours in England and Wales from 11 pm to 1 am.

This plan is contingent on a public consultation launched today, outlining measures for the Home Secretary to extend licensing hours in instances of “exceptional international, national, or local significance.”

Home Secretary James Cleverly underscored the unifying power of international tournaments, expressing support for England and Scotland’s progress to Germany and Wales’ potential qualification. He emphasised the need to rally behind these teams and the hospitality industry, indicating the intent to consider extended hours for pubs and bars in the event of a semi-final or final berth.

These proposals, subject to public consultation, aim to provide a substantial boost for the hospitality sector and offer clarity for establishments. They align with recent government efforts to bolster the industry, including sustained relaxed licensing regulations enabling pubs, restaurants, and bars to sell takeaway pints without bureaucratic constraints.

Past precedents include the extension of pub licensing hours during the men’s Euro 2020 final and the King’s Coronation bank holiday earlier this year.

The public consultation which will run for 12 weeks, intends to gather input from citizens, licensing authorities, and the hospitality sector. The government pledges to factor in these diverse perspectives to inform its decisions regarding potential extended licensing hours for the upcoming football tournament.


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