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May Day Bank Holiday Change

30th September, 2019

Traditionally, May Bank Holiday falls on a Monday each year.

To celebrate the 75th Anniversary of VE Day, May Bank Holiday will be delayed by four days for the whole of the UK and will take place on Friday, 8 May 2020.  The holiday will form part of a 3-day weekend of commemorative events.

According to the BBC, the May Bank Holiday has been moved only once before, in 1995, to mark the 50th Anniversary of VE Day.

Why does this matter?

The direct swap of Bank Holidays does not require any recalculation of full Bank Holiday entitlement. It will not affect full-time employees, who work Monday to Friday, that are contractually entitled to the Bank Holidays or receive the time in lieu.

However, it may affect part-time workers or employees with irregular working patterns (for example, if a part-time employee does not work on Fridays, then they will not ‘use’ any of their leave). Employers should check the contractual provisions for their part-time employees to determine the position of their leave entitlement.

By taking a proactive approach, employers can identify potential issues now and engage with those affected to assess the impact and offer solutions.

The statutory minimum

Employers must provide the minimum of 5.6 weeks’ of leave per year.

Part-time employees are entitled to accrue holiday on a pro rata basis. Those employers who work part-time should not be disadvantaged as they should receive a pro rata equal to the amount of holiday as compared with full-time comparators.

Top Tips

  1. Plan well in advance to minimise disruption to the business.
  2. Ensure all employees are notified of the change to the Bank Holiday dates in sufficient time.
  3. Review contracts and handbooks to check the impact of the date change for employees with irregular hours.
  4. If there are requests to change holiday bookings, consider practical solutions.

Please contact Claire Brook for further information regarding holiday entitlement and for a review of your contracts and handbooks.

Claire Brook


Email: [email protected]
Tel: 01244 405 575

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