Why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday?

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There are eight bank holidays every year in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, and nine in Scotland. We’re so used to the term signalling a few days off and a long weekend of meeting friends in the pub or attending barbecues that we don’t even think about its meaning. So, why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday?

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Why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday?

Until 1834, there were 33 public holidays in the UK including saint’s days and religious festivals.

However, it was decided in 1834 that this was too much and should be reduced to four public holidays.

The Bank Holidays Act of 1871, written up by banker and liberal politician Sir John Lubbock, turned these four public holidays into ‘bank holidays’.

For the first few years of this act, people called bank holidays St Lubbock's Day to honour Sir John Lubbock.

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Why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday:Why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday: Bank holiday has an obvious meaning (Image: Getty)

Why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday:Why is a bank holiday called a bank holiday: Banks have to close on bank holidays (Image: Getty)

The Act forced banks and financial buildings to close on these four days, and that’s where the bank holiday gets its name.

Bank employees weren’t given the day off because they needed to organise the accounts and tidy things up.

Most banks are still closed with no staff working on bank holidays today, and even if you bank online or over the phone the

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