TPA calls on council leaders to sign pledge not to bring in four-day week

Embargoed: 00:01 Thursday 31st August 2023


The TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA) has written to all council leaders asking them to sign a pledge ruling out implementing a four-day working week in their Town Hall.

A four-day week, whereby employees would reduce their hours worked by 20 per cent for the same pay, is currently being trialled for staff in South Cambridgeshire District Council. The TPA campaigned against the extension of the trial to March 2024, arguing that it is not suitable to conduct such an experiment in the public sector.

The results of the trial in South Cambridgeshire were so poor that local government minister Lee Rowley MP demanded that the council scrap the trial

Having been instrumental in preventing a trial taking place in Bassetlaw, the TPA is calling on other councils to give local residents assurances that the scheme won’t be implemented in their area by signing the pledge. 

The TPA previously revealed that a four-day week would cost £30 billion per year in lost working time alone if introduced across the public sector. The group also said there is no credible evidence that productivity could increase by 25 per cent - as would be required to ensure output is maintained - merely by reducing working time by 20 per cent.


John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:

"Residents are rightly worried that a part-time council could be coming to their Town Hall. 

“As we’ve seen elsewhere, this experiment leads to poorer services, with taxpayers picking up the tab.

“We hope council leaders will show their commitment to delivering value for money for ratepayers by signing our pledge.”


TPA spokespeople are available for live and pre-recorded broadcast interviews via 07795 084 113 (no texts)

Media contact:

Conor Holohan
Media Campaign Manager, TaxPayers' Alliance
[email protected]
24-hour media hotline: 07795 084 113 (no texts)


Notes to editors:

  1. Founded in 2004 by Matthew Elliott and Andrew Allum, the TaxPayers' Alliance (TPA) campaigns to reform taxes and public services, cut waste and speak up for British taxpayers. Find out more at

  2. TaxPayers' Alliance's advisory council.

  3. More information on the TPA’s campaign to Stop the Clock Off can be found here
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