Are you ready for the extra bank holiday?

By Andrew Willis
26 Apr 2023

This year the UK will see an extra bank holiday added to the work calendar to celebrate the coronation of King Charles III. His coronation will take place on the 6th of May 2023, and employers in the UK need to plan for an extra bank holiday on the 8th of May to celebrate the occasion.

We've put together some frequently asked questions regarding this extra bank holiday to help you. If you need additional support, why not get in contact with one of our experts here.

Bank holiday in England and Wales or northern Ireland  written in the sand.

What are bank holidays?

Bank holidays are normally when banks close for the day. Historically other businesses wouldn't be able to operate without the bank, so they also have a day off as a bank holiday.

They can be the same as a substitute day (when a bank holiday falls on a weekend), public holiday or a religious holiday, for example:

  • Easter Monday.
  • Christmas Day.
  • Summer bank holiday.
  • Early May bank holiday.
  • Spring bank holiday.
  • August bank holiday.

Why do we have a bank holiday for the coronation?

It was announced that an additional bank holiday would take place in the UK to celebrate the King's coronation. This is to allow residents of the UK and communities to celebrate the once-in-a-lifetime event.

The UK Government has said that the 2023 bank holiday is in line with the extra bank holiday that marked the late Queen Elizabeth ii's coronation that took place in 1953.

The extra bank holiday in england and wales and northern ireland  for the Kings Coronation.


Bank holiday in England and Wales or northern Ireland  written in the sand.

Are my employees entitled to the day off for the coronation?

As an employer, you may be asking what the rules are for staff receiving an additional bank holiday. There is no automatic right to time off for the coronation, but it will depend on what it says in your employee's contract of employment.

For example, if the employment contracts say "20 days annual leave plus bank holidays" means that employees have a contractual entitlement to the additional bank holiday off.

"28 days annual leave inclusive of bank holidays" or similar in your employee's contract, means that it's up to you to decide whether employees have the day off for any additional bank holidays. It's important to take into consideration your approach to this decision.

If you allowed employees to take time off for the two extra bank holidays in 2022, Queen's Platinum Jubilee or the Queen's funeral, but don't allow them to take the King Charles coronation off as a bank holiday, it could lead to poor morale and productivity.

Are bank holidays a legal requirement?

There's no statutory leave entitlement to bank holidays in the UK. All full-time employees must receive an annual holiday allowance of 5.6 weeks (28 days) of paid annual leave a year. It's up to you as the employer to decide how employees can take this.

a calendar marking off the usual bank holidays in the year, and an employees annual leave in england and wales


What if I have part-time employees?

If you hire part-time employees the amount of time they can have off in a year is worked out differently. For example, if they work two days a week, the sum would be 2x5.6 =11.2. The 11.2 is rounded up to 12 days of holiday entitlement a year.

If you are offering your full-time employees paid time off on bank holidays then you should also offer this to your part-time employees, this will help keep your workplace equal.

Although this can get a bit complicated when you need to work out the part-time employee bank holiday allowance.

Following the same scenario as before, the sum would be 15/40 x 64. (number of hours worked per week/ number of hours in a full-time week) x (full-time bank holiday entitlement x the number of hours per working day).

Using this sum, the bank holiday allowance of a part-time employee is 25.6 hours (26 hours).

Do I still need to pay my employees for time off on bank holidays?

This will depend on the wording of their employment contract. If in their contract you have specified that bank holidays are included in their holiday allowance, then your employees should be paid bank holidays.

If bank holidays aren't included, employees can take paid holiday leave on bank holidays.

a small pig enjoying an additional bank holiday, maybe on an extra bank holiday or  easter monday or boxing day

Can I refuse holiday requests on bank holidays?

In an instance where you need your employees to work on bank holidays but they want to take the day off. You should encourage them to book the holiday off following your annual leave policy.

For example, if you need them to book the time two weeks in advance.

If you have a legitimate business reason you can refuse the holiday request. In this scenario, if your employee fails to turn up to work, you can treat it as an unauthorised absence.

If you do refuse a holiday request, let your employees know that they can book it off another time.

people celebrating the extra bank holiday, normally the following monday after the coronation

Speak to an expert

The King's coronation will be a bank holiday. However, there is no legal reason for employees to take an additional day off because of royal events like this taking place. That doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t grant it.

Croner has a team of award-winning HR consultants who are specialists in their field. We've been helping businesses for over 80 years and our advice line is open 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. Why not speak to a Croner expert on 0800 470 2818.

About the Author

Andrew Willis

Andrew Willis is the senior manager of the Litigation and Employment Department and assumes additional responsibility for managing Croner’s office based telephone HR advisory teams, who specialise in employment law, HR and commercial legal advice for small & large organisations across the United Kingdom.