Sunday Trading Devolution Would Cost Jobs

The Association of Convenience Stores has outlined the damage that devolution of Sunday trading laws will have on jobs and the economy.

In evidence submitted to Government last month, ACS cites research conducted by Oxford Economics, who have calculated that if implemented by councils across England and Wales, extended Sunday trading hours would cost small shops in excess of £870m whilst generating no extra revenue for the economy overall, leading to a net loss of 3,270 jobs across the retail industry.

ACS Chief Executive James Lowman said: “The evidence shows that removing Sunday trading rules will serve only to displace trade from small shops to large shops and will result in job losses, investment being cancelled and some stores having to close.  If this Government is committed to helping small businesses, it must abandon its plans to change the law on Sunday trading.”

An ACS survey of local authority chief executives has revealed that 52% would include out of town retail parks, out of town supermarkets and large shopping centres as their first or second preference for extending opening hours on a Sunday if the regulations were to pass.

Mr Lowman continued: “The government have argued that devolving Sunday trading decisions will support high streets, but our survey clearly shows that allowing local authorities to make these decisions will lead to out of town superstores being allowed to open longer, to the detriment of high streets.  We also know that councils will be watching neighbouring local authorities’ decisions on Sunday trading, and that there will be a domino effect as Sunday opening rules are liberalised town by town.

“Let’s be absolutely clear, these devolution plans will lead to widespread 24/7 opening, with out of town retail parks the big winners, and small high street shops the losers.”

ACS is part of the wider Keep Sunday Special campaign group in opposition to changes to Sunday trading regulations. More information about Keep Sunday Special is available at


This entry was posted by Chris on Fri, 13/11/2015 - 09:20