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Ascension Day 2024 in the United Kingdom

Ascension Day is observed in the United Kingdom on the 40th day of Easter. It commemorates Jesus Christ's ascension into heaven, according to the New Testament of the Bible.

Is Ascension Day a Public Holiday?

Ascension Day is not a public holiday. Businesses have normal opening hours.

Jesus statue

Ascension Day marks Jesus Christ's ascension into heaven, according to Christian belief.

©iStockphoto.com/Sebastien Cote

What Do People Do?

Some Christians in the United Kingdom attend church services on Ascension Day to celebrate this event. Prayers are made and people sing hymns at these services. Communion, also known as Eucharist, may also be offered to the congregation. Ascension Day marks the end of Rogationtide, which is a time when people pray for blessings to occur.

According to some sources, some schools used to have a day off on Ascension Day in the United Kingdom. However, students who attend Sunday school or take part in religious studies (such as classes) may participate in lessons or activities that explain the meaning of Ascension Day.

Public Life

Ascension Day is neither a bank or public holiday in the United Kingdom. Offices, retail stores, educational institutions and public transit systems stick with their usual schedules.


Ascension Day is one of the earliest Christian festivals dating back to the year 68 CE. According to the New Testament in the Bible, Jesus Christ met several times with his disciples during the 40 days after his resurrection to instruct them on how to carry out his teachings. It is believed that on the 40th day he took them to the Mount of Olives, where they watched as he ascended to heaven.

Ascension Day marks the end of the Easter season and occurs ten days before Pentecost. Depending upon the phases of the Moon in a particular year, Ascension Day is usually celebrated on a Thursday. However, some churches may choose to celebrate it on the following Sunday. Many Eastern Orthodox churches calculate the date of Pascha (Easter) according to the Julian calendar, rather than the Gregorian calendar used by many western churches, so their Ascension Day usually occurs after the western observance.

About Ascension Day in Other Countries

Read more about Ascension Day.

Ascension Day Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2019ThuMay 30Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2020ThuMay 21Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2021ThuMay 13Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2022ThuMay 26Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2023ThuMay 18Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2024ThuMay 9Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2025ThuMay 29Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2026ThuMay 14Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2027ThuMay 6Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2028ThuMay 25Ascension DayObservance, Christian
2029ThuMay 10Ascension DayObservance, Christian

While we diligently research and update our holiday dates, some of the information in the table above may be preliminary. If you find an error, please let us know.