Pressure mounts on Boris Johnson to call snap Bank Holiday Monday

·3-min read
Photo credit: Catherine Ivill - Getty Images
Photo credit: Catherine Ivill - Getty Images

As football fever reaches dizzying new heights in England, ahead of the country's clash with Italy in the Euro 2020 final on Sunday, there isn't just pressure on the squad to secure a win (ideally without it going to nail-biting penalties, please).

That's because there's a growing call for Prime Minister Boris Johnson to announce a one-off, last-minute Bank Holiday on Monday, in recognition of this big moment in English footballing history.

A petition started by Lee Jones is asking for the UK to receive a Bank Holiday on Monday 12 July if England win Euro 2020, and it's gained well over 300,000 signatures and counting.

"Sunday 8pm is a difficult time for families to plan to be together for the event - knowing we have an additional day off the next day would significantly help this," Lee wrote in the details of the petition, referencing the evening kick off of the monumental match. Let's not forget, if the game goes to extra time and penalties, we could be looking at a late night indeed, and that's not even taking into account the celebrations if England do win.

"Furthermore, a historic win should be celebrated. It would be expected for the winning team to parade the trophy, and a Bank Holiday would be a perfect time to do this," Lee continued, and the reasoning checks out seeing as the match is taking place at Wembley, so the team is already on home turf.

Photo credit: Shaun Botterill - UEFA - Getty Images
Photo credit: Shaun Botterill - UEFA - Getty Images

"English people would naturally want to continue to enjoy the win, giving the retail and leisure industry a much-needed opportunity to make up lost revenues," Lee concluded his case.

That's some power of persuasion right there, and clearly, the idea has won a lot of people over, as the petition has over 320,000 signatures so far at the time of writing.

There's just one fly in this ointment, and it's that someone needs to sign off Lee's plan... Cue Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has been seen enjoying the Euros so far at Wembley with new wife Carrie.

The PM said he wishes England the “very best” ahead of the final, but when asked about the possibility of a long weekend, he said granting a bank holiday would be “tempting fate."

Photo credit: Frank Augstein - Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: Frank Augstein - Pool - Getty Images

Downing Street officials have said they'll announce any celebrations, like a victory parade for the England team, “in due course."

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “I don’t want to pre-empt the outcome of Sunday’s match. Clearly we want England to go all the way and win the final, and then we will set out our plans in due course.”

So, no mention of that Monday duvet day, but as the petition continues to grow in numbers, the very appealing prospect can't be ruled out just yet.

What we do know is that pubs can stay open until a later time of 11.15pm on Sunday to reduce the risk of customers being told to leave before the match ends.

And of course, regardless of the noise around the way the country marks this long-awaited major tournament final, once thing's for sure, Sunday's match is set to be one none of us will forget any time soon.

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