Fiona Bruce (Congleton, Conservative)
I am grateful for this opportunity to speak about Sunday trading. The point that I want to make is simple.
As Members may recall, on
During the debate on the Bill, I expressed my concerns about those proposals, and in particular about whether they would be used as a precedent for a further—or permanent—extension of Sunday trading hours. I will not repeat those concerns in detail as they are on the record, but they included: the potentially negative impact on family and community life; the need for us all—as individuals and as a nation—to have a recognised rest period each week for our health and well-being; and the potential consequential pressure to work on Sundays, especially for some of the lowest-paid workers in our society, and the subsequent strain on their families. I also referred to concerns raised by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, and to the fact that for many people of faith, Sunday still has a special significance.