Pubs will be able to extend their opening hours to 1am if England or Scotland make it to the Euro 2024 semi-finals this summer.

The Home Office has announced that pub and bar licensing hours will be extended to 1am,  if either or both teams reach the last four or the final. 

Home Secretary James Cleverly said the move will “allow friends, families and communities to come together for longer to watch their nation hopefully bring it home”.

It covers venues in England and Wales, with Scotland and Northern Ireland in charge of their own licensing rules. Germany is hosting Euro 2024, with the semi-finals currently scheduled to take place on Monday 9 and Tuesday 10 July. The final is set to take place on Sunday 14 July.

 UKHospitality has been engaging with the Home Office on its proposal to extend licensing hours and said the move would allow both venues and fans to cheer on the home nations.

Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive of UKHospitality, said, “Euro 2024 is set to be a huge event for hospitality businesses this summer, as fans pack pubs and bars to cheer on the home nations.

“We support the Home Office proposals to extend licensing hours for the semi-finals and final, should we reach that stage of the tournament.

“Major sporting events provide a huge revenue boost and extended hours are essential to allow venues and fans to take full advantage.”

Night-Time Industries Association (NTIA) CEO Michael Kill said, “The Home Office’s decision to extend hours for the European Championship finals and semis is a game-changer for businesses in hospitality and nightlife.

“This timely boost comes as a lifeline for sectors facing immense economic pressure. It’s heartening to see Government proactively supporting trading opportunities, especially after genuine consultation where our voices were heard. 

“This move not only bolsters financial prospects but also revitalises the vibrant spirit of our night-time economy. We applaud this collaborative effort and urge for continued support to keep our industries thriving.”

The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) Chairman Nik Antona commented, “CAMRA was pleased to support this extension when it was first proposed, and it’s great to see Government listen to consumers and the on-trade, and back our local pubs and clubs in this way.

“Cheering on your team, in the atmosphere of the pub, surrounded by friends and local community, is an experience you can’t get anywhere else.

“Recognising the unique nature of the pub in this way is a much-needed boost for licensees, who have faced an uphill struggle to remain profitable in recent years in the face of spiralling costs.”

“Creating a more responsive mechanism for licensing hours alterations would let pub-goers celebrate the full range and diversity of UK sporting achievement – not just the men’s Euros 2024.”