Pubs And Clubs To Stay Open Two Hours Later To Mark 75th Anniversary Of VE Day
Pubs and clubs across the UK will stay open later to celebrate the 75th anniversary of VE Day this year.
To mark the special occasion, the government has announced that drinking establishments will be able to serve for two hours later than usual.
On Friday 8 May and Saturday 9 May, public houses will be serving from 11am until 1am the following morning.
The move, which was announced in Parliament today, will also apply to premises licensed to provide entertainment such as music, dances, plays and films.
Speaking about the decision, Home Secretary Priti Patel said it's the perfect way to celebrate the Allied victory.
She said: "VE Day events across the country will see the nation come together to pay tribute to the heroes who fought for our freedom and supported the war effort at home.
"Pubs are at the heart of our communities and this is a great opportunity to raise a glass to mark this historic occasion."
Last year, it was announced that the early May bank holiday was to move from Monday 4 May to Friday 8 May.
Commemorative events will be taking place across the country over the three day weekend, including street parties, bagpipers, bell ringing and The Nation's Toast - where more than 20,000 pubs will encourage patrons to raise a glass to the heroes of WWII.
At the time, the then Business Secretary Greg Clark said: "VE Day marked an historic moment in not only our nation's, but the world's history and it is important that we commemorate this great occasion on its 75th anniversary.
"Moving next year's early May bank holiday to VE Day itself is a right and fitting tribute.
"It will ensure as many people as possible have the opportunity to remember and honour our heroes of the Second World War and reflect on the sacrifices of a generation."
While former Defence Secretary Penny Mordaunt added: "Moving next year's bank holiday will give us the opportunity to come together to remember and honour those who gave so much to secure our freedom and liberty."
The move was also praised by veterans' charities, with Sir Andrew Gregory - CEO of Armed Forces charity SSAFA - saying: "Acknowledging 75 years since VE Day with a commemorative bank holiday is absolutely fitting. It is our duty to keep the events of the past alive in collective memory, including future generations - this is how we ensure that such a conflict never happens again.
"It is our hope that the nation takes a moment to reflect on the significance of this date, as a milestone that changed the course of history for the whole world.
"SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity was proud to have been there supporting men, women and families during the Second World War, and is still here now for the whole Forces community - whenever they need us. We're honoured to be the official charity partner for VE Day 75 and call on everyone to remember the men and women that fought to defend our freedom."
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