Government ponders plans for a ‘Neighbour Day’ bank holiday

Mr Kruger said in the report: “Neighbour Day should be a bank holiday, with an automatic permission for any residential street to close to traffic and organise a street party.

“On this day Queen’s Award winners, and perhaps other honours recipients, could be announced. Charities and environmental groups would organise special fundraisers or volunteer days. Schools and care homes would organise intergenerational get-togethers.”

He said the idea should only be contemplated if there is “real public support”. 

The French version, which takes place in May, was started 21 years ago by a Parisian who was appalled that an elderly neighbour had died in their flat and nobody noticed for months.

Responding to Mr Kruger’s report, Mr Johnson said he wanted to build on “tremendous levels of voluntary action by private citizens” that emerged during lockdown, when 750,000 people volunteered to help the vulnerable by doing their shopping and collecting medication for them.

He said the report contained “many exciting ideas” which are now being considered by the Government.

Mr Kruger said: “The experience of the recent crisis – the willingness of local people to step forward and collaborate, the flexibility shown by public services and the social commitment of businesses – shows what is possible.”

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