February 3 2016.

The December issue Motorcycle Trader carried a story concerning possible changes to the Sunday Trading regime. The essence of the piece was that the government announced a consultation in the 2015 summer budget and that, following intense lobbying from the SNP, shop worker’s unions and a number of devout Christian MPs, the proposed changes to the legislation had been suspended.

In another twist to the story, the government announced today, the 3rd of February, that it would be going ahead with plans to deregulate the legislation and would do so by inserting clauses into the Enterprise Bill that is currently going through Parliament.

If passed, the new rules will effectively allow local authorities to decide if stores over 280 sq. metres (3000 sq. feet) can open for more than six hours on a Sunday. Employees would be given the right to refuse Sunday working.

While business secretary Sajid Javid said the move would allow local authorities to "help struggling High Streets", Labour’s shadow business secretary, Angela Eagle, accused Mr Javid of a "gross abuse of power" and asked why the plans were being added "at this late stage" rather than being in the Bill from the start. Shop worker’s union Usdaw isn’t happy either and said ministers were "behaving disgracefully by trying to change Sunday trading by the back door".

The government’s plans can be read HERE