AN international calendar production firm based in Colchester has warned a last minute change to a bank holiday date will cost businesses thousands of pounds.

Rose Calendars, based on Severalls Industrial Estate, said the unexpected change - announced by the Government on Friday - means it is considering all solutions after having printed many calendars already.

The date of the early May bank holiday in 2020 has been moved from Monday, May 4 to Friday, May 8.

It is to commemorate the 75th anniversary of VE day, the end of the Second World War.

But Rose Calendars, one of Britain’s biggest calendar companies, has already printed a large number of the calendars with the original bank holiday date.

It is still in the process of calculating the cost since the family firm learned of the change.

The firm prints calendars for businesses which contain their adverts.

Rose Calendars started to sell 2020 products to customers in January and also has customers abroad.

Some of these calendars were due to be distributed as early as next month.

Company boss Michael Rose said: “It’s great news the Government has decided to do this to mark the momentous and important anniversary in the history of this country and of Europe.

“However, it means we have had to spring into action to ensure our customers get the right date in their 2020 calendars so we are producing special commemorative stickers to highlight the occasion.

“As a reminder of the date, customers will be able to use a selection of the stickers, not only on their calendars, but on other promotional materials.

“Due to Brexit, companies like ours have been buying materials in advance to keep costs as low as possible given the unpredictable economic climate.

“We, therefore, produce some of our 2020 stock well in advance.”

The firm prints on average 250 to 300 calendars for each business it supplies, totalling

about 2 million a year.

In 2002, the firm was also forced to make changes to calendars after the Government announced plans for a public holiday for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee.

It absorbed the costs.

Many people have also set dates for large scale celebrations such as weddings or community events before the bank holiday switch.

Alistair McMillan, sales and events manager at events venue Hedingham Castle, said the change would cost it “thousands of pounds” because a two-day bank holiday event on a Sunday and Monday - like the siege it hosted this year - would now be “off the cards”.

The May Day bank holiday has only been moved once before in 1995, to mark the 50th anniversary of VE Day.

VE Day marks when the Allied forces officially won victory in Europe, marking the beginning of the end of World War Two.