Euro 2024: Will there be a bank holiday if England wins? We just might get one under the new government

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Despite a lukewarm start to the tournament, Gareth Southgate has silenced critics as his squad progressed to the final of Euro 2024 this Sunday (July 14) against Spain with a shocking win against the Netherlands on Wednesday night.

While there have been public calls for such a holiday, including during the 2020 Euros and the Lionesses' victory in the 2022 Women's Euros, the government has consistently declined these requests. Reasons cited include logistical challenges and economic costs, estimated at £2.9 billion for an additional bank holiday​.

In previous tournaments, such as Euro 2020, then-Prime Minister Boris Johnson considered declaring a bank holiday if Three Lions won, but his plan was dropped due to the need for advance planning. As England’s historic win may just be on the horizon this time round, there have been renewed calls for for a bank holiday like England goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, who urged recently-ousted Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to declare a national holiday if the team wins.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

When the England Women's team won Euro 2022, there were also calls for a bank holiday. However, the government decided against it, stating there were "no plans to change the current pattern of public bank holidays" despite the significant achievement of the Lionesses​ - leading to discussions about whether the women's victory was being given the same recognition and celebration as a potential men's victory.

UEFA via Getty Images

But this year’s Euro 2024 may be the first time the new government under Sir Keir Starmer to do so as he previously showed support for a bank holiday for sporting achievements. Referring to the Lionesses’ victory in the Euro 2022 final, Starmer tweeted, “It’s almost 60 years since England won the World Cup. I’m never complacent about anything… but there should be a celebratory bank holiday if the Lionesses bring it home.”

And to pile on the pressure, the beer giant Budweiser has also joined forces with 1966 England World Cup hero, Sir Geoff Hurst, to launch an online petition calling on the new Labour Government to give the country a bank holiday should the England men’s team win the Euros this Sunday.

Sir Geoff, who scored a hattrick to win England the world cup in 1966, said: “With England so close to achieving greatness on Sunday, I couldn’t be prouder of the team, and I know the nation feels the same...Now, England are on the verge of making history. As the last surviving member of the ’66 starting XI, I can’t tell you how incredible it would be to see England win again. But this moment isn’t just about the team. It’s about England fans across the nation.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

So, keep your hopes up, but just in case, consider booking that extra day off on Monday to enjoy an "unofficial" holiday regardless.

England’s past achievements in the Euros

England has never won the UEFA European Championship. Their best performance came last time out in 2021, in the delayed Euro 2020 tournament when they reached the final but lost to Italy in a penalty shootout. The squad also reached the semi-finals in Euro 1996, only to be defeated by Germany, again on penalties​.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.