BASINGSTOKE residents are split on Scotland’s decision to trial a four-day week plan for workers without a loss of pay.

While many of the Gazette’s readers welcomed the decision that would benefit a lot of people in Scotland, many people said it would only help the “office-goers” and not people like nurses, carers, supermarket workers etc.

The Gazette asked on its social media channels whether England follow the Scotland government’s decision to trial a four-day working week.

Reacting on the question, one reader said we need a better life-work balance in this country.

“A four-day work week has to be an improvement on the stress of the current working pattern,” she said, adding: “Will employers be willing to work to implement it though? My guess is sadly no. I may be proved wrong.”

However, many readers felt the trial would only benefit people who work Monday to Friday and 9am to 5pm.

“It wouldn't happen for a majority of workers, though. All the emergency services, doctors, surgeries and their support staff, pharmacies, shop workers, restaurant/bar workers, drivers, school staff (unless kids will also do a 4-day week), other child care, gym/swimming workers and the list goes on. So, the only people this would be doable for are those office Mon-Fri 9-5 type workers.”

Another reader said: ““[The trial is] Only for the elite, right? Us – nurses, carers, supermarket workers still working even on bank holidays.”

Increasing the number of bank holidays is another way to give employers and society time to adjust to four-day weeks, said another reader, adding: “Up to 12-a-year quickly, then gradually increased to 24-a-year over, say, 24 years. Then keep going until effectively a four-day week is normal. It can be done.

“The productivity gains of the industrial revolution were shared with workers because trade unions fought for it. The productivity gains of the information revolution have not yet been shared with ordinary people.”

One person commented all studies have shown that efficiency and productivity would increase for four-day working weeks.

“Pay should stay the same, contracted hours should be reduced by 20 per cent. All studies have shown that efficiency and productivity is increased as people are much more willing to work at a consistently high level across four days in order to earn a third day off.

“Therefore 40-hour weeks should become 32-hour weeks at the same level of pay, benefits etc. It makes sense for the companies since it doesn't reduce productivity or profit, makes sense for the workers as they gain an extra day of time for themselves.

“For the people complaining that this would only work for certain industries, you're correct, but does something good not applying to you mean that it should not be available to other people?”