An extra bank holiday has been announced to mark the King’s coronation, but do your salon team have the right to take the day off?
First, let’s be clear about what’s happening. The coronation of His Majesty King Charles III is on Saturday 6th May, 2023. The extra bank holiday is on Monday 8th May and will apply across the United Kingdom.
The rules that cover normal bank holidays also apply to extra ones, including the coronation bank holiday on 8th May.
So, can you decide to keep your hair or beauty salon open and insist your team come in on Saturday 6th and Monday 8th?
Must you give your salon team bank holidays off?
The short answer is no.
Contrary to popular belief there is no statutory legal right to bank holidays. Whether someone is legally entitled to a bank holiday is entirely dependent on the wording of their contract of employment.
The UK law on time off for public holidays
Under UK law annual leave entitlements should be agreed when your new salon employee starts work. Details of their holidays and holiday pay should be clearly stated in their written statement or contract of employment.
The law only requires you to give your salon employees 28 days holiday per annum (for employees working five days per week).
This minimum 28 days can include bank holidays but it doesn’t have to. It’s entirely up to you as salon owner to decide this when you agree terms with a new team member.
Contractual v statutory entitlement for bank holidays
Many salon contracts give employees ‘XX number of days holiday PLUS bank or public holidays’.
If you have these contracts then you are under a contractual obligation to let your salon team take all bank holidays as paid leave.
But if your contracts of employment don’t make provision for bank holidays then there is no statutory requirement for you to give paid leave on these days. You can keep your salon business open and insist your team work.
Check each salon employee’s contract very carefully. It’s likely you have used different versions of the contract over the years or ‘inherited’ employment contracts when you took over the salon.
Run them past your lawyer if you’re in any doubt.
Must you pay extra for working in salon on a bank holiday?
There is no legal right for salon employees to be paid any extra for working a bank holiday.
Again, it depends on the terms of your employment contract.
Can you insist on working on Saturday 6th May?
The day of the coronation (Saturday 6th May 2023) is not a bank holiday and is an ‘ordinary’ working day. So it’s up to you as the salon owner whether you decide to open or close.
If you decide to close so your team can take part in the coronation festivities then whether you have to pay employees for the day again depends on the terms of your employment contract.
For more information on general holiday entitlement for your salon team visit the gov.uk website.
Plan ahead when it comes to bank holidays
Taking time off around bank holidays is always a popular holiday request. So if you want to avoid potential misunderstandings over holiday pay, entitlement to time off and last minute absences you need to plan ahead.
Remember: set the rules out clearly now to your salon team, be fair and consistent and you’ll save yourself some holiday headaches.
Holidays can motivate your salon team
And finally, a word of caution before you insist on enforcing your employment contracts and making the team work.
The Chartered Management Institute highlights a survey which shows that the promise of more holiday has a significant impact on team motivation. In particular, the 16-24 age group is especially keen to be offered more annual leave. 49% confirmed they would be prepared to work harder in return for more holiday allowance.
This blog post is not a substitute for legal advice and you should not rely on the information it contains or take any action based on it. Always get professional legal advice if you are unsure about the law in relation to your business.
Lockhart Meyer Ltd disclaim all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on the contents of this guide.