The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) and the Rural Shops Alliance (RSA) have both written to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) about Sunday trading.

The letters follow Trade and Industry Secretary Alan Johnson’s suggestion that the DTI was conducting a cost analysis study into the impact a change of opening hours would have on retailers, consumers and employees. Johnson said he was considering a change because Sunday had become such a busy shopping day. In its letter, the ACS points out that there is no evidence to suggest consumers want longer hours, and that the current Sunday Trading Act retains a good balance between local and out-of-town shopping.

In his letter RSA chief executive Sean Carter said: “Sunday is a big trading day for our retailers and the Act is about the only legislation that provides some protection to rural stores.”