Sunday trading laws

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Mojo

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From today until 9 September the usual Sunday trading laws in England and Wales which mean stores larger than 280 square metres can only have their checkouts open for a maximum of 6 Hours and between 10.00 and 18.00 are suspended.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-18942729

I've always considered it a pain when I want to buy something and all the larger supermarkets are closed on a Sunday, but on the other hand are the regulations a lifeline for small, independent stores to whom the regulations do not apply? Although with there being more and more convenience stores operated by the giants (Tesco Express, et al.) is there any point now as they're now taking on the smaller stores too?

It is my understanding that no restrictions apply in Scotland. Could these rules in the future become permanent and we have stores open 24 Hours / 7 Days per week?
 
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GB

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It's good but why is it only being done for the Olympics? The majority of people have been calling for something like this for years.:roll:
 
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Will be intresting to see if stores outside London decide to take up the chance to open longer or not, when i used to work for Sainsburys (granted it was a while ago now) it was double time for working sunday.
 

ainsworth74

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Will be intresting to see if stores outside London decide to take up the chance to open longer or not

At least two stores in my area (North East) are doing so and one of them isn't exactly in a prime retail location.

We can only hope that this change becomes permanent I've always found it ridiculous that stores aren't allowed to be open for as long as they want to be on Sundays.
 

SS4

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My local Asda (Birmingham) is opening for longer too. Not sure about Sainsburys but I'd imagine so.

The trading laws need to be repealed. What I find happens is that the supermarket's petrol stations and smaller stores (like tesco express) are exempt from the guidelines and there are few independent shops near me so after 4pm I basically have to wait until Monday morning. Hopefully it'll create some jobs too

My main concern is for staff and their working conditions.
 

Yew

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fully it'll create some jobs too

My main concern is for staff and their working conditions.

Stores arent empty afer 4pm on a sunday, Tesco have stock counts, filling and merchandising teams in. In fact from my experience there are more staff in store sunday night than you would find at 10pm on saturday night, when the store is open.

My concern is when will the behind the scenes work be done now. :/
 

Mojo

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It's also interesting how the opening hours have changed over the years. I remember when shops started opening first on a Sunday most tended to open 10am - 4pm, whereas now they tend to open 11am - 5pm. Most places I go in have a 30 Min ''non trading'' time beforehand whereby the doors are open 30 Min before opening hour, but no transactions can take place. I've been in long queues at the checkouts with conveyor belts loaded with stuff, and till operators ready to start scanning come the 'official' opening time :lol:

In London though it seems that everywhere opens Midday - 6pm.

In this town which has two Tesco Extra stores, one opens 10am - 4pm and the other opens Midday - 6pm, presumably to maximise their coverage.
 

NSEFAN

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If it's a success then I see no reason why the change shouldn't be permanent.

If nothing else it might help get people spending money again.
 

313103

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Has anyone considered the staff in all of this? From what i am seeing on here no one does. The Sunday trading laws were not just about Sundays being a sacred day, it was also about protecting staff who work in these stores.

My wife works in one of these stores and currently Sunday is optional and additional work. Now if we have the stores open 7 days a week 18 hours a day (like it would if the Sunday trading law was withdrawn) she would have to work Sundays andnot get paid anymore for doing so.

Now if you think that the companies would employ more staff for this, think again, they are in it to make money not employ more staff. They would put presure on the existing members of staff to do more and more overtime.

As for the analogy it would get more people to spend, if people aint got enough money to go shopping at other times they aint going to do it on an extended Sunday opening times.

Food for Thought me thinks.
 

GB

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There are a couple of posts above with workers in mind. In any case, no one can force you to work over time and as already mentioned, there are staff working in supermarkets beyond the 4pm or 5pm deadline anyway, just that they are not currently trading.
 

Crossover

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For the people mentioning about how mad it is that large stores can't open for long on a Sunday, bear in mind that in the not too distant past, stores didn't open on a Sunday, end of.

I have to say that I think this could well be the start of longer opening hours, as I suspect after having it for a few weeks, many will want it to stay. Though stores will have to be wary of staff hours etc as otherwise, there could be a similar situation to what has happened on the railways recently (namely London Midland last year)

All said and done, I'm not entirely sure there is a need for every store to be open for longer. Taking supermarkets as an example, there are now so many mini supermarkets around, that there is usually somewhere to get something, even lateish on a Sunday evening, even now
 

Trog

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I don't see why medieval superstition should stop stores from opening when they like.

With my local Tesco overnight opening, just means that they don't lock the doors and you pick your way round the store, between the people reloading the shelves ending up at the self service till.

Usually only visit them in the small hours on the way back from night work, but do feel a bit conspicuous walking round in my HV orange overalls.
 

SS4

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For the people mentioning about how mad it is that large stores can't open for long on a Sunday, bear in mind that in the not too distant past, stores didn't open on a Sunday, end of.

I have to say that I think this could well be the start of longer opening hours, as I suspect after having it for a few weeks, many will want it to stay. Though stores will have to be wary of staff hours etc as otherwise, there could be a similar situation to what has happened on the railways recently (namely London Midland last year)

It was also meant to have added privileges for staff which have gone by the way. Unlike London Midland though the staff working in a supermarket can't say no or they'll be getting their P45 faster than it takes Usain Bolt to do the 100m and shop workers are largely replaceable right off the street and can't take industrial action because they need the money (especially after the government has/is planning to stop money for workers put into poverty by striking)
 

rail-britain

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It is my understanding that no restrictions apply in Scotland. Could these rules in the future become permanent and we have stores open 24 Hours / 7 Days per week?
Superstores have only recently been opening overnight and 7 days in Scotland
The majority of other larger stores still operate their traditional opening hours, but with slightly shorter opening hours on a Sunday

Asda was one of the first to introduce 24 hour opening hours in Scotland, they were of the opinion the stores were already staffed overnight so having a small number of tills in operation was of benefit
They were joined a few months later by Tesco
Neither Sainsburys nor Morrisons followed this, and still do not open 24 hours
However recently both Asda and Tesco have changed this policy and now many of these supermarkets now close for at least eight hours on Sunday night (into Monday morning), and Tesco are about to extend these restricted hours further
I suspect this is the hours that the retail sector will campaign for in the future, as these are the ones that now work best in Scotland

Equally, I sometimes forget about the late opening on a Sunday morning when visiting large supermarkets in England
Quite often I have to simply wait in the car park for two hours, whereas in Scotland a supermarket from the same brand would already be open in Scotland
 

johnnyp_360

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Has anyone considered the staff in all of this? From what i am seeing on here no one does. The Sunday trading laws were not just about Sundays being a sacred day, it was also about protecting staff who work in these stores.

My wife works in one of these stores and currently Sunday is optional and additional work. Now if we have the stores open 7 days a week 18 hours a day (like it would if the Sunday trading law was withdrawn) she would have to work Sundays andnot get paid anymore for doing so.

Now if you think that the companies would employ more staff for this, think again, they are in it to make money not employ more staff. They would put presure on the existing members of staff to do more and more overtime.

As for the analogy it would get more people to spend, if people aint got enough money to go shopping at other times they aint going to do it on an extended Sunday opening times.

Food for Thought me thinks.

Supermarkets could employ staff exclusively to work on Sundays just like bars/restaurants, co-op type stores, video stores etc... There is always somebody after a job in this day in age. They would not have to change/alter their current staff hours or schedules then.
 

WestCoast

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I've noticed that quite a few supermarkets (Tesco, Sainsbury's, Booths and Aldi) near me are taking advantage of being able to open for longer, despite obviously not expecting any additional 'Olympic traffic'. Sunday trading hours tends to be place specific, normally it's 10am-4pm here and they seem to be extending that to 10am-6pm.

Although with there being more and more convenience stores operated by the giants (Tesco Express, et al.) is there any point now as they're now taking on the smaller stores too?

Good point, within 20-30 minutes walk I can reach no less than six Tesco Express stores, because of their purchase of three convenience store chains that operated in my area; Healds Day & Nite, One Stop and Safeway/BP Compact. As a result, aside from a branch of the Co-Op, the only 'independent' competition seems to be from corner shops branded as Londis or Premier (franchises I believe).

For the people mentioning about how mad it is that large stores can't open for long on a Sunday, bear in mind that in the not too distant past, stores didn't open on a Sunday, end of.

It's still the case in most of Europe that smaller independent non-food stores and many large stores, such as supermarkets and hypermarkets, don't open at all on a Sunday, especially outside the major cities. Equally so, I've noticed that opening 24 hours is still a rarity on the continent, most supermarkets closing at 8pm or 10pm at the latest. Self-service checkouts and things like that don't seem to have caught on yet either. UK food retailing seems to have followed North America in terms of longer hours and self-service technology.
 

Peter Mugridge

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If nothing else it might help get people spending money again.

Wouldn't they just be spreading the same spending out over more hours? They've only got a finite sum of money in the first place...

Should spread the crowding out a bit, though, which would make it easier all round.
 

richw

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I found it quite useful, coming off the beach at 7 today i could nip to do my shop, rather than worrying on a Sunday that I am not going to make closing time. Made far more better use of the day. There was a lot of other people in their who had done the same. I think perhaps allow stores to decide. With regards to economy benefitting from longer hours The shops will either see it economically beneficial or they won't bother with longer hours.
 

Liam

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Personally, I think it is great that my local ASDA is open 24/7 (I live in Scotland). This means I can do my weekly shop after my Saturday or Monday backshift, when the shop is nearly empty, nobody to get in my way, and the car park nearly empty. The only downside is that I am unable to buy alcohol after 10pm.
 
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Personally, I think it is great that my local ASDA is open 24/7 (I live in Scotland). This means I can do my weekly shop after my Saturday or Monday backshift, when the shop is nearly empty, nobody to get in my way, and the car park nearly empty. The only downside is that I am unable to buy alcohol after 10pm.

I could have been mistaken; but I think the supermarkets were open on Easter Sunday (not something I personally agree with)? I seem to remember seeing someone, in Ayr, carrying some shopping in a Morrisons bag?
 

richw

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I could have been mistaken; but I think the supermarkets were open on Easter Sunday (not something I personally agree with)? I seem to remember seeing someone, in Ayr, carrying some shopping in a Morrisons bag?

Down here they weren't, maybe different in Scotland though.
 

Crossover

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Yeah, in England at least, the larger stores cannot open on Easter Sunday at all (was part of the agreement of the Sunday trading laws I believe) - the Morrisons bag may have been someone recycling/reusing, maybe?
 

michael769

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In Scotland most shops are now open 7 days a week closing only on Christmas day and New Years day. Some supermarkets also close on Dec 26th and Jan 2nd, however Boxing Day is the traditional sales launch day and clothing DIY and homeware stores open.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
I should say that unfettered Sunday trading has been the norm in Scotland for close to 30 years and small shops still manage to survive.

It is quite noticeable that much of the staff at the weekends in many shops is different (and typically younger) from those you see on weekdays. Weekend Shop work is very popular with students for example. People for the most part do not find themselves working 7 days a week (unless through choice due to being short of money) - although this sometimes happens in December when folks are offered pay premiums to help stores meet demand.

In practice the supermarkets have a huge array of different shifts and work patterns that they need to fulfill and far from forcing folks into working 60 hours a week, they are among the most flexible when it comes to working hours. Although persistent staff shortages does mean that staff sometimes have to be firm in refusing requests to help out their line mangers sometimes; this pressure tends to be less than in a small shop where the lower staff numbers mean that managers have a smaller pool from which to find someone when they need to fill a shift at short notice.
 
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heart-of-wessex

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We (Asda) are open from 9am to 8pm, even though there is no Olympics in Melksham, it seems to be a bit unheard of yet but some are taking the advantage of shopping after 4, that's what I saw when I left last Sunday, I am still on a 10-4 shift anyway
 

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My wife works in one of these stores and currently Sunday is optional and additional work. Now if we have the stores open 7 days a week 18 hours a day (like it would if the Sunday trading law was withdrawn) she would have to work Sundays andnot get paid anymore for doing so.

Now if you think that the companies would employ more staff for this, think again, they are in it to make money not employ more staff. They would put presure on the existing members of staff to do more and more overtime.

Food for thought me thinks.


So did you have these same worries when lots of stores went 24 hours and closing at midnight on a saturday? Did your missus have to then start working nights then too? Did she allow a change in her contract for this?

Or did the stores hire more staff to cover the night time opening and manning of the tills/bakery counter and your missus didnt have to work nights at all?


Food for thought me thinks!
 

route:oxford

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I could have been mistaken; but I think the supermarkets were open on Easter Sunday (not something I personally agree with)? I seem to remember seeing someone, in Ayr, carrying some shopping in a Morrisons bag?

Why wouldn't a supermarket in Scotland not open normally on Easter Sunday?

Easter Sunday is B&Qs & Homebases peak turnover day in Scotland.
 

Butts

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The best question to throw at objectors to the extension of Sunday Trading is to ask them how people in Scotland cope with it's alleged debilitating features.

Also if they feel so strongly about it, are they actively campaigning for it to be restricted in Scotland in the same manner as England and Wales :lol:
 

michael769

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Supermarkets aren't open on Easter Sunday in England. I thought the same applied in Scotland. Other members have put me right on that one.

The English public holidays do not apply in Scotland.

Scotland has it's own regime of traditional local holidays with different areas taking different days. Not all areas of the country take Easter Monday as a holiday.
 
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