Extension of Pub Licensing Hours for Euro 2024 Semi-Finals and Final “Essential” say Trade Leaders

Pubs could be allowed to stay open until 1am if any of the home nations make it to the semis or final of next summer’s Euros.

Ministers will consult on extending licensing hours for pubs & bars in England and Wales if UK teams get through.

Under the proposal, which has been launched today as part of a public consultation, pub licensing hours in England and Wales could be extended from the usual 11pm closing time to 1am if any of the UK nations progress to the latter stages of the tournament in Germany.

The Home Secretary, James Cleverly, holds the authority to extend licensing hours for occasions of “exceptional international, national, or local significance.” In this case, the government aims to support the teams and the hospitality industry, recognising the unifying power of international tournaments.

Cleverly said: “There are few things that bring a country together more than the prospect of winning an international tournament.” With England and Scotland already on their way to Germany and Wales still in contention for qualification, the government believes it is fitting to make provisions that would allow families, friends, and communities to come together and cheer for their respective nations.

Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: “Euro 2024 is set to be a huge event for hospitality businesses next summer as fans pack pubs and bars to cheers on the home nations.

“We support the Home Office proposals to extend licensing hours for the semi-finals and final, should we reach that stage of the tournament.

Major sporting events provide a huge revenue boost and extended hours are essential to allow venues and fans to take full advantage.

“This sort of advance planning benefits fans, businesses and the Government, and is exactly the type of approach we have been advocating for in our engagement on this issue for many years. I’m pleased the Home Office is consulting well in advance, acting on our calls on behalf of the sector.”

The consultation runs until Monday 19 February 2024.