Bonehead's Bank Holiday: hard Brexiteer Peter Bone calls for national holiday

Tory MP Peter Bone

Tory hardliner Peter Bone has called on the government to make June 23 a bank holiday called "Independence Day".

Commons leader and brief Conservative leadership hopeful Andrea Leadsom said she was "personally very sympathetic" to the idea.

It comes despite the government last year rubbishing Labour plans to introduce more bank holidays - which are estimated to cost the economy £2bn a time - saying: "The British economy would be on permanent holiday if [Jeremy] Corbyn got near Downing Street."

Wellingborough MP Mr Bone, speaking during businesses questions in the Commons, said: "The country works very hard, we have very few bank holidays relative to Europe.

"It seems to me that we should have one in June, close as possible to the 23rd of June.

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"The trouble is I am seeking a name for that day and I'd ask the leader of the House whether she has any suggestions or anyone else in this House or across the United Kingdom does?

"The working title for the 23rd June is independence day."

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Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom told Mr Bone she was "personally very sympathetic" to the suggestion.

She added: "I'm always very happy to take up suggestions," before encouraging him to write to her to see whether she could make "any further progress".

Mr Bone has previously attempted to introduce a Brexit bank holiday as a private member's bill, attracting criticism last year after he and fellow Tory hardliner Chris Chope slept in the Houses of Parliament for three nights to propose 73 pieces of legislation, stopping other backbenchers' proposals being debated.

Other bills tabled between the two of them including privatising the BBC and Channel 4, decriminalising TV licence-dodging and ending working time regulations.

Mr Bone has also previously failed in a parliamentary bid to rebrand the August bank holiday "Margaret Thatcher Day".

Earlier this year The Sun revealed Mr Bone's commitment to the Leave cause in all its forms, after he left his wife, often mentioned in Parliament, for a married physio 20 years his junior.

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