On the anniversary of legislation passing the first bank holiday in 1871, bodies including the National Council for Voluntary Organisations and the National Association for Voluntary and Community Action argue that a new bank holiday in October would benefit the nation's health, skills and community cohesion.
'A community day is an excellent way to involve them to reduce crime, boost health, protect the environment and help young people to read and write,' commented Dame Elisabeth Hoodless, executive director of Community Service Volunteers.
'What better way to bring people together to make a difference and strengthen our communities?' she asked.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said the proposal 'ticks all the right boxes', adding it would also bring Britain's public holiday 'deficit' closer in line with the EU average. Currently the UK has three fewer days off.
'This is an idea whose time has come. It's a great opportunity for a new prime minister to make a mark in history,' he said.
Policy & politics