The government’s plans to devolve Sunday trading powers to local authorities have suffered a major setback following opposition from the Scottish National Party.
The SNP said yesterday that its 55 MPs would vote against plans to introduce the changes in Parliament next week, meaning the government’s majority would be overturned. A number of Tory MPs were also expected to rebel.
The government was expected to introduce the changes to Sunday trading regulations next week through an amendment to the Cities and Devolution Bill.
However, a government spokesperson said it still planned to introduce the legislation: “The government has consulted on plans to devolve Sunday trading powers to local authorities in England and Wales. We will publish our response soon and will be laying legislation in due course.”
Chancellor George Osborne announced plans to devolve Sunday trading powers to councils in his summer Budget. Under current rules, large stores are restricted to six hours trading on Sundays.