Home Bargains is the latest British retailer to announce it will be keeping its doors closed on Boxing Day this year, as well as New Year’s Day next year, to give its staff a well-deserved break. The move comes at the same time as Sainsbury’s decision to do the same.
More than 22,000 employees will be able to stay home on Boxing Day, as well as on New Year’s Day.
A spokesperson for the company said: “We recognise how incredibly hard all of our colleagues have worked over the last year, to continue to serve the local communities that rely on them so much.
“In light of this, we felt it was only right to reward store teams by taking the decision to close all of our stores on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, and also close stores early at 5pm on Christmas Eve.
“As a family-run business we know the importance of being together at Christmas with those we care about most, now more than ever, and this is our way of saying thank you to all of our colleagues for their continued hard work and dedication.”
Simon Roberts, Sainsbury’s Chief Executive, said: “Christmas is a really special time for so many, but because of lockdown restrictions last year, lots of us weren’t able to celebrate in the way we wanted.
“In recognition of this and to say a massive thank you to all our colleagues for everything they have done during the last challenging year, we will be closing all of our supermarkets, convenience stores and petrol filling stations, as well as Argos and Habitat stores, this Boxing Day.
“I want to thank our customers in advance for their understanding, which will mean as many of our team as possible can have a well-deserved break to spend time with loved ones.”
Paddy Lillis, Usdaw General Secretary, added: “After discussions with Sainsbury’s we very much welcome the company closing all their stores on Boxing Day this year, to give their staff a proper break over Christmas.
“The pandemic showed just how important shopworkers are to our society and communities, as they stepped up and kept essential services running throughout.
“Key workers have done so much this year and we don’t think it is too much to ask to give them the longest possible break over the festive season.
“We now hope that other retailers will follow Sainsbury’s lead, by closing their stores on December 26 to help workers enjoy their Christmas, give them a well-deserved breather and make Boxing Day special again.”
Britons took to social media to express their opinions on Home Bargains closing for two days this Christmas, and shutting on New Year’s Day next year.
Twitter user Wendy Woodward wrote: “Should be like that every year!”
Dave Lloyd said: “Good for them!”
Mandy Reynolds added: “Well done to Home Bargains, I hope more stores follow suit.”