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Pubs to open until 1am to celebrate Royal Wedding

Published:  08 January, 2018

Pubs and licensed premises in England and Wales could be allowed to stay open until 1am to celebrate the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

The government has launched a public consultation on plans to extend licensing hours on the nights of Friday 18 May and Saturday 19 May until 1am.

The Royal Wedding, which will take place on Saturday 19 May, will also coincide with the FA Cup Final.

Licensing hours have previously been extended for special occasions including the Queen’s 90th birthday, the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011, and the World Cup in 2014.

“The Royal Wedding will be a time of national celebration, and we want everyone to be able to make the most of such an historic occasion,” said home secretary Amber Rudd.

“I hope that this relaxation of the licensing hours will allow people to extend their festivities and come together to mark what will be a very special moment for the country.”

The government proposes to make a licensing hours order under Section 172 of the Licensing Act, which would extend opening hours for the sale of alcohol until 1am.

A four-week public consultation will ask for views on the proposals from the public as well as the police, licensing authorities and alcohol awareness groups.

The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) has welcomed the government’s decision.

“This is great news for pubs and pub-goers and shows the government has listened to our calls to put pubs at the heart of the Royal Wedding celebrations,” said chief executive, Brigid Simmonds.

“Visitors see the Great British pub as a cultural icon, almost as much as the Royal Family. Extended hours would give a £10 million boost to the trade and make the most of the expected increase in tourism.”