Sunday trading restrictions to be suspended for Olympic and Paralympic Games

The Sunday Trading (London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games) Bill, which suspends Sunday opening hours restrictions during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, has received Royal Assent. The suspension is for eight consecutive Sundays from 22 July to 9 September 2012 inclusive, and is a temporary measure that applies to England and Wales only. 

The current Sunday trading restrictions provide that large shops (ie shops with a relevant floor area of more than 280 square metres) are limited to Sunday opening hours of six continuous hours between 10am and 6pm. The intention of the suspension of these restrictions is to allow shop owners to take full advantage of the Games. 

However, shop workers will retain their statutory rights, such as the right to opt-out of Sunday working, during this period. Further, given that there is not much time before the Games, the Government has temporarily reduced the notice period that shop workers in large shops must give to opt-out of Sunday working from three months to two months. 


Are employers required to inform shop and betting workers of their right to opt out of Sunday working? The XpertHR FAQs section answers this and other frequently asked questions regarding Sunday working. 

Sunday working: Deal with a shop or betting worker's notice to opt out of Sunday working Use this workflow when an employee informs you that he or she wishes to opt out of Sunday working.