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World Cup bank holiday poll shows huge age divide on whether to have a day off if England win

The country is split over whether a bank holiday should be announced if England wins the women’s football World Cup, with older voters against a celebratory day off, polling has revealed.

Rishi Sunak has so far resisted calls to announce a special holiday in England if the Lionesses win in the final on Sunday.

A poll by YouGov, carried out on Thursday, indicated marginally more adults do not think there should be a one-off bank holiday.

But the divide between those for and against the proposal becomes apparent when the data is broken down by age range, with two-thirds of younger adults backing the idea.

According to the poll of 2194 adults, 48 per cent said the Prime Minister should not call a holiday in England in the event of an historic win, compared with 41 per cent who believe he should.

But there was considerably more support among younger adults, with 66 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds supporting a bank holiday. Just 19 per cent said they were against the idea.

Among adults over the age of 65, a vast majority – 73 per cent – said there should not be a bank holiday if the lionesses win.

Sir Keir Starmer called for a celebratory bank holiday should England win Sunday’s final.

The Labour leader said on Wednesday there “should be a celebratory bank holiday if the Lionesses bring it home”.

The Government said an extra bank holiday is not currently in its plans, adding it will find the “right way to celebrate”.

If the team win on Sunday, it would mark the first time England has won a football World Cup since 1966, when the men’s team was victorious.

Ahead of Sunday’s final, pub bosses have called on the Government to loosen licensing rules for opening hours and alcohol sales for the final.

The Liberal Democrats urged the Government to recall Parliament to pass legislation allowing pubs to serve alcohol from 10am, in time for kick off at 11am.

Lib Dem Deputy Leader Daisy Cooper said: “This is an open goal for the government. The Lionesses have made history by reaching the final, it’s only right that people across the country can come together and show their full support on Sunday.

“MPs should get down to Westminster tomorrow and score a last minute winner for our pubs and the Lionesses.”

London Mayor Sadiq Khan announced a free “super screening” of the final would be displayed in Victoria Park, Tower Hamlets – a move he said would enable “thousands of fans together to roar on the team”.

Neither Mr Sunak or Sir Keir will attend the final but Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer will travel to Australia to watch the match.

The Prince of Wales, who praised England’s “phenomenal win” after the semi-final, will also not travel to Australia to watch the game on Sunday and will watch it on television at home.

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