How British Pubs Are Celebrating The Queen's Platinum Jubilee

This year marks the 70th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's ascension to the British throne, and, to put it mildly, it's a big deal. Crowned at just 25, Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor is the first British monarch to mark seven decades as the United Kingdom's sovereign royal and to commemorate the historic occasion, events and celebrations are planned throughout the entire year. However, the bulk of the festivities, which include a baking contest held by the Queen, will culminate in a long holiday weekend this June.

Unofficially, residents and businesses across the United Kingdom will find their own ways to celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee. Pubs are a huge part of the British culture, and these businesses and their "punters" (customers) will no doubt be eager to get in on the festivities as well. As a matter of fact, the government is giving the pubs approval to extend business hours by two hours, according to The Independent. The standard closing time of 11:00 p.m. for most pubs in England and Wales can be pushed to 1:00 a.m. throughout the Jubilee weekend, Thursday, June 2 through Saturday, June 4.

The proposal was put forth in December 2021 by U.K. Home Secretary Priti Patel, who praised the monarch for her "utmost dignity, steadfastness, and resolve throughout her remarkable reign." Patel said the longer hours will allow people "across England and Wales to raise a glass to toast Her Majesty the Queen and mark her incredible service to our country."

Extended pub hours allowed for special occasions

According to The Drinks Business, the government is issuing a "Licensing Hours Order" under the 2003 Licensing Act, which allows for the relaxation of drinking establishments' operating hours in England and Wales. The order was issued "to mark the Her Majesty the Queen's Platinum Jubilee and to celebrate the longest reigning Monarch in the United Kingdom," said Kit Malthouse, Minister for Policing of the United Kingdom.

These extended hours are not unprecedented. According to The Daily Mail, the Licensing Act allows for extensions on occasions that hold "exceptional international, national or local significance." Previously, pubs were allowed to stay open late for the Queen's 90th birthday in 2016, the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and the 2011 wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, who indulges in this drink at the pub

The extension will also apply to drinking establishments' entertainment licenses as well, meaning restrictions on music and noise are also lifted until 1:00 a.m., explains Food & Wine. While we feel for any early-to-bed residents who might live close to the late-night action, the Queen's Platinum Jubilee seems like a great reason to stay up late, pop open a bottle of something special, and join in the revelry.