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Bank holidays and British Summer Time

Bank holidays are holidays when banks and many other businesses are closed for the day. Public holidays are holidays which have been observed through custom and practice. Find out about the bank and public holiday dates and when the clocks go forward and back for British Summer Time.

Bank and public holidays in Scotland

Scotland 2011 2012 2013 2014  2015
New Year's Day 3 January* 2 January* 1 January  1 January   1 January  
2nd January 4 January* 3 January 2 January 2 January 2 January 
Good Friday 22 April 6 April 29 March 18 April 3 April 
Royal wedding 29 April - - - -
Early May Bank Holiday 2 May 7 May 6 May 5 May  4 May
Spring Bank Holiday 30 May 4 June* 27 May 26 May 25 May
Queen's Diamond Jubilee - 5 June - - -
Summer Bank Holiday 1 August 6 August 5 August 4 August 3 August
St Andrew's Day 30 November 30 November 2 December*  1 December*  30 November  
Christmas Day 26 December* 25 December 25 December 25 December  25 December
Boxing Day 27 December* 26 December  26 December  26 December 28 December*
* substitute day

There are seven permanent bank holidays across the whole of Scotland. Christmas Day and Good Friday are public holidays. There are also other public or local holidays which can be determined by local authorities, based on local tradition. Since 2007, St Andrews Day has also been a permanent bank holiday.

There was an additional bank holiday on 29 April 2011 for the royal wedding.

Businesses and schools are not necessarily closed on Scottish bank holidays, and the Scottish banks follow the English and Welsh bank holidays for business reasons.

Time off for employees

You don't have an automatic right to paid leave on bank and public holidays, though many people receive the day off work. Any right to time off or extra pay for working on a bank holiday depends on the terms of your contract of employment.

For more information about your right to paid leave, see 'Holiday entitlements'.

British Summer Time

British Summer Time (BST) starts on the last Sunday in March and ends on the last Sunday in October, at 1.00 am Greenwich Mean Time (GMT):

  • in spring the clocks go forward, losing an hour - at 1.00 am GMT the UK moves to 2.00 am BST
  • in autumn the clocks go back, giving an extra hour - at 2.00 am BST the UK moves to 1.00 am GMT

Summer time periods begin and end on the following dates:

  2011 2012 
Clocks go forward 27 March 25 March
Clocks go back 30 October 28 October
  • Source Direct Gov
  • Last Updated: 13 Jan 2012