Easter

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered on 8th March 2018.

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Photo of Greg Knight Greg Knight Conservative, East Yorkshire

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will take steps to bring into force the provisions of the Easter Act 1928 to fix the date of Easter from 2019 onwards.

Photo of Andrew Griffiths Andrew Griffiths Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

At present, Easter occurs on the first Sunday after the first ecclesiastical full moon following the spring equinox. The Easter Act 1928, which remains on the Statute Book, would set the date for Easter to fall on the Sunday that follows the second Saturday in April (i.e. between 9 and 15 April). The Act has not been brought into force. To so would require an Order in Council, with the approval of both Houses of Parliament. The Act also requires that, before the Order is made, “regard shall be had to any opinion officially expressed by any Church or other Christian Body." I understand that the Archbishop of Canterbury has indicated that he is working with other Christian churches to agree on a fixed date for Easter. If the Christian churches were to agree on moving to a fixed date for Easter then the Government would consider, depending on what date is agreed, whether to bring into force the Easter Act 1928 or to make such other legislative provision as may be needed. However, there is no indication yet whether or when a date will be agreed or what that date would be.

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