World Cup bank holiday petition: 200,000 demand national holiday if England triumph in Russia

Sophie Williams
England fans will watch nervously as the Three Lions take on Croatia: REUTERS

More than 200,000 people have signed a petition calling for Monday to be a Bank Holiday if England win the World Cup.

The petition, posted on the government's website, said that if the Three Lions are triumphant, the country should be given the Monday off work as the next day "will not be pleasant for all fans."

By 8.30am on Wednesday, more than 200,000 people had signed it.

The number of signatures now means that government has to consider debating the idea.

However with the process of making a petition into law taking some time, it's unlikely that the country would get a bank holiday on Monday, unless Theresa May herself decides to call one.

Jeremy Corbyn has joined calls for a Bank Holiday. He said it would have have to cover the UK and be soon after the World Cup to allow fans to celebrate.

His spokesman said: "The World Cup is a very special international competition. It's something that brings people together on a very large scale and we need recognition of that and recognition of the importance of football in the country."

Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry also joined calls for a Bank Holiday.

So far, Downing Street has refused to comment on the petition.

Gareth Southgate's side take on Croatia on Wednesday in the semi-finals of the World Cup.

Should they win, they will face France in the final.

The big match marks the first time an England team have made it this far in the tournament since Paul Gascoigne and his teammates took on Germany in 1990.

Across the UK, pubs, bars, gardens and public parks are getting ready to host huge World Cup parties - with police warning fans not to "overstep the line" with any celebrations in light of the excesses following Saturday's quarter-final victory.

Around 30,000 people are expected in London's Hyde Park, where a special screening has been organised.