09 Jun 2020The government is considering suspending Sunday trading laws for a year in order to aid UK economic recovery once the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown ends. Under the Sunday Trading Act 1994, large retailers are currently permitted to trade for six hours on Sundays. There are no restrictions on small retailers. As part of the plans, trading hours will be extended to help reduce queues and ease overcrowding in shops. Cafes and pubs could also be given approval to serve food and drink outside, and councils will be encouraged to allow more outdoor markets to give businesses time to adapt to social distancing measures. Commenting on the plans, Adam Marshall, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said: 'Businesses need to be given every possible opportunity to start to generate sales again. If there are rules that can be relaxed to give more companies a fighting chance to trade their way through this crisis without compromising safety, ministers should do everything in their power to make it happen.'