Number of Christmas Day workers in South West soars
The number of people in the South West working on Christmas Day has risen by 78% in six years.
The TUC says that is urging all those able to celebrate at home with family and friends to spare a thought for the tens of thousands for whom it is just another working day.
In 2010, the last year for which figures are available, almost 172,000 people (87,000 men and 84,000 women) were in work on Christmas Day, compared with 96,000 in 2004.
Just over 87,000 women and 84,000 men were working on December 25, 2010.
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The number of female employees working was 70% higher than in 2004 and the number of male workers working on Christmas Day was 88% higher than in 2004.
NHS and social care workers are likely to make up the largest group, with nearly 75,000 at work in 2010 compared to 47,000 in 2004.
As well as hospitals asking more staff to work during the festive period, more than 14,000 people worked in hotels, pubs and restaurants on Christmas Day two years ago, with a similar number working in shops and garages.
Nigel Costley, regional secretary of the South West TUC, said: "There has been a significant increase in the number of people working on Christmas Day in recent years, reflecting the changing nature of the way we live our lives.
"We should all spare a thought for the people who will be hard at work while we're opening our presents, messing about with our new gadgets, tucking into our turkey dinners, sipping a glass of sherry and relaxing with our families.
"Unions have worked hard to make sure the UK's Christmas Day employees get premium rates. But let's remember all those whose work helps keep the country ticking over while the rest of us are enjoying ourselves."