- Campaigning group Keep Sunday Special issues ministers with a ‘letter before action’ that outlines plans for a future Judicial Review
- Argues the Government used outdated evidence for its review and has not published an assessment of its impact on family life
- Government maintains extending Sunday shopping hours will help businesses and high streets better compete
The Government has been threatened with legal action over its plans to extend Sunday trading hours by campaigning group Keep Sunday Special.
The group has issued ministers with a ‘letter before action’ that outlines plans for a future Judicial Review examining proposals to allow councils to let shops open longer on Sundays.
The group argues the Government used outdated evidence for its review into Sunday trading and has not published an assessment of its impact on family life.
A Keep Sunday Special campaign spokesman told The Telegraph: “We do not enter into this action lightly, and do so with a heavy heart.
“There are fundamental flaws in the process that the Government has taken and full consideration is needed, not the inadequate process that has taken place to date.”
Association of Convenience Stores chief executive James Lowman said: “Longer opening hours will serve only to benefit out-of-town stores, whilst hurting high streets, Post Offices and small shops – resulting in a net loss of jobs to the economy.
“We fully support this legal action to hold Government to account for their actions.”
The Government has argued that it is giving local councils the right to decide and that it has introduced protections to ensure shop workers are not forced to work Sundays.
A Government spokesman said: “Extending Sunday shopping hours has the potential to help businesses and high streets better compete as our shopping habits change.
“The rights of shop workers are key to making these changes work in everyone’s interests. We are protecting those who do not wish to work Sundays, and those who do not want to work more than their normal Sunday working hours.”