The new holiday applies to both public and private sector employees in the U.K. for the year 2023. The one-off public holiday is intended to give people the opportunity to celebrate the coronation and welcome the new King to the throne.
Since there is no general legal right to take time off on an additionally granted bank holiday, employees’ right to take this additional public holiday will depend on the wording in their employment contracts. Generally, unless a contract grants employees a right to all bank holidays, rather than a specific number, the employee will not have a right to the additional holiday. If employees do not have a contractual right to take paid or unpaid time off during public holidays, employers will then decide at their discretion whether to grant this one-off additional public holiday or not.
When deciding whether to grant their employees a day off during this additional one-off public holiday, employers should consider that schools will be closed, which means that most working parents may not be able to secure childcare for that day. In addition, employers who decide not to allow their employees to take time off that day may face negative press attention.