Monarchy fans and beer fans alike will be able to celebrate a bit longer this weekend as pubs across England and Wales have their opening hours extended to celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday.
To mark the monarch’s official birthday (her actual one was back in April) the government is allowing pubs to delay their closing times by two hours - to 1am - today and tomorrow (Saturday).
Announcing the move to the House of Commons in March, Prime Minister David Cameron said: “I’m sure that will be welcomed right across the House.”
He was probably right, and it’s likely to be welcomed across the nation, particularly since the move happens to coincide with the first two days of the Euro 2016 football championships in France.
In keeping with tradition dating back to the 18th century the Queen has two birthdays to ensure celebrations such as the Trooping the Colour parade can be held in the summer and are less likely to be affected by bad weather.
Celebrations this weekend will mark both the Queen’s birthday and the fact she is Britain’s longest-serving monarch. As well as the traditional Trooping the Colour at Horse Guards Parade, there will be a street party on The Mall in London and a service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral, which will be attended by other nonagenarians, including Sir David Attenborough and Paddington Bear author Michael Bond.
Pubs have been granted longer licences in the past to mark other significant royal occasions. The wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011 and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012 both warranted the move.