ONE Bolton MP has rejected the growing calls to relax Sunday trading laws for shops across the country.

Yasmin Qureshi, MP for Bolton South East, has joined the Usdaw Union, who represent many retail and others who work in the industry, in opposing relaxing Sunday trading laws.

Under the Sunday Trading Act of 1994 large shops are only allowed to open for six continual hours in a day, with exceptions for smaller shops, and provides legal rights for shopworkers.

Ms Qureshi said: “I believe that relaxing Sunday Trading laws is unnecessary and will not provide the boost that our economy needs.

“Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in the UK, we have seen how important our retailers and shopworkers are, both in keeping our economy moving and ensuring people can get vital food and supplies.

“It is therefore worrying that the Government is considering unwelcome changes to Sunday Trading laws.

“Loosening regulations on Sunday trading would put great pressure on retail workers who have done so much to support the country through this emergency.

“The current long-standing arrangements have worked well for years, and it is clear that moves to relax them are aimed at helping large shops further dominate the market.

“The Government should drop its reported plans to deregulate trading hours and focus on supporting our high streets where businesses face uncertainty far into the future.

“It should also use this opportunity to support retail workers further in return for the crucial efforts they have made in recent months, not enforce misguided changes.”