The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) is urging operators to respond to the Home Office’s consultation to decide whether to relax licensing hours during England matches in the World Cup 2014.

They are now able to submit their views on the impact of a relaxation and the duration and geographical extent it should apply to. The consultation closes on 26 March 2014.

If approved, it means all pubs would be able to stay open and sell alcohol during all England matches with a schedule kick-off time of 8pm or later.

BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “We welcome this consultation as an opportunity to make clear the wish of publicans, the wider industry and most importantly England fans to enjoy World Cup 2014 in their local pub – the next best thing to being there.

“Over the next fortnight I encourage publicans and fans to make their voice heard by responding to the consultation.”

The consultation was launched after Prime Minister David Cameron “ordered a rethink” on pub opening times for the World Cup, a day after the Home Office said it had ruled out extending licensing hours.

An application on behalf of all pubs had been submitted to allow them to stay open from 23:00 to 01:00 on 13 and 14 June, the opening weekend of the tournament, and the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) had also asked for an extra two hours on the closing weekend, 11 and 12 July.

To view the consultation visit