More than 160,000 people have signed a petition to call for stores to close on Boxing Day on behalf of retail workers.
Ian Lapworth, a baker from Kettering, started the campaign a month ago, calling for a return to a less commercialised holiday season.
“Whilst not everyone may see Christmas as a religious holiday, it should be respected as such, and retail workers (who work so hard on the run up to the big day) should be given some decent family time to relax and enjoy the festivities like everyone else,” he wrote on the petition’s web page.
“Most retail workers are on the go up to Christmas Eve, then back on Boxing Day. Sometimes they have no choice. We managed 30 and 40 years ago…when shops were sometimes shut for a whole week. Let’s get back to the way it was. Forget making money for one day, let’s concentrate on making more memories with the ones we love.”
The petition aims to achieve 200,000 supporters and will be delivered to the prime minister Theresa May.
Sarah Jane Holt from Bedworth signed the petition and wrote: “Families need to be together at Christmas, worked 18 years in retail and it’s very sad I had to work Christmas because I had to sell clothes.
“If I was a doctor and had to work Christmas it was to save a life, but all I was doing was selling stuff cheap that didn’t sell at full price!”