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Extended opening hours for Royal Wedding

By Lorraine Heller , 14-Feb-2011
Last updated on 15-Feb-2011 at 12:43 GMT

The government intends to grant extended opening hours to restaurants and pubs during the Royal Wedding, allowing venues in England and Wales to serve food and alcohol until 1am on the festive weekend.

A licensing hours order has been laid out and is due to go through Parliament next month, when it will be passed into legislation to allow the longer working hours without the need for special permits.

It means that pubs, bars, restaurants and other licensed venues will be allowed to remain open and serve food until 1am as well as to sell alcohol and put on entertainment on Saturday 30 April and Sunday 1 of May.

The plans outlined by the Home Office are designed to help businesses take advantage of the extra trade surrounding the wedding celebrations. Without the extension order, premises would have had to apply to their local council for a Temporary Event Notice at a cost of £21.00.

Join the festivities

Minister for Crime Prevention James Brokenshire said: "The Royal Wedding is a time of national celebration which is why we want to allow as many people to take part in the festivities as possible.

"We know that the majority of on-trade licensed premises tend to close before midnight and we recognise that many will want to extend their open hours to serve alcohol, food and put on entertainment if they choose to mark this special occasion.”

Routine debates

The order was laid down under section 172 of the Licensing Act 2003 following a two-week consultation, and its passage into legislation is now expected next month, after the routine debates in the House of Commons and the House of Lords.

Once passed, it will extend opening hours for the sale of alcohol and food for consumption on the premises and the provision of regulated entertainment in licensed premises in England and Wales between 11pm on Friday 29 April and 1am on Saturday 30 April and between 11pm on Saturday 30 April and 1am on Sunday 1 May. It would cover:

  • the sale of alcohol for consumption on the premises;
  • regulated entertainment;
  • late night refreshment (hot food and drink after 11pm) where alcohol is sold for consumption on the premises.

The extension would apply only to places where alcohol and food are consumed in the premises, so would not cover supermarkets.

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