Many moons ago there was a time in the UK when most of the shops were closed in England on Sunday. As a non-religious person I used to get bored to death on Sundays, about the best you could do was to visit an over-priced garden centre or go to the beach.
Today of course all that has changed and yet we STILL in the 21st century have some really silly, out-dated laws governing opening times even though we don’t need this to protect employees (minimum wage and the working time directive etc.) – and I don’t recall as a consumer or citizen ever being ASKED if I wanted these silly restrictions to continue.
The government is now putting out signals to indicate there could be a permanent change in the law (HURRAY) and yet watching Sky this morning I couldn’t help thinking we were back in the dark ages with the shopkeepers association unbelievably griping about the possibility of longer hours. Would these perhaps be the same people who said that consumers would not want to go shopping on Sundays (I remember the arguments well and I also remember the step-change in habits when shops DID start opening on Sundays) – even though certainly my experience suggests that Sunday is THE most popular day to shop – the MetroCentre in Gateshead is PACKED on Sundays – perhaps because many who are NOT in the retail sector are working most other days?
The sooner shops are allowed to open when they want and not when the government wants – the better. Bring it on!