Onrec logo The Online Recruitment Resource

This year's Mad Friday to be the maddest in years

Last Friday before Christmas just happens to fall on the 23rd, and authorities expect mayhem

"We shall know them by their bad Christmas jumpers and their Santa hats."

Mad Friday – the last working Friday before Christmas where workers cut lose with the spirit of the Festive Season – is expected to be the maddest in years, as it falls just two days before the big day.

One Yorkshire-based office services provider says that the national press may have jumped the gun, suggesting that Mad Friday 2017 was last week.

But Desk.co.uk says there's worse to come, with workers from offices and construction workers coming together in town and city centres with only one aim in mind – to get completely blathered.

"Last Friday was just an alcohol-fuelled curtain-raiser to the main event," says Desk.co.uk's Jonathan Ratcliffe. "The 23rd is going to be the final, final day at work for millions of people, and they're going to celebrate in style."

In fact, Ratcliffe expects the entire week to be one of excess, with office parties happening all week, building up to the final letting-off-of steam before more than a week away from work.

  • "We shall know them by their bad Christmas jumpers and their Santa hats," says Jonathan, "Not to mention their inability to walk in a straight line and singing tuneless Christmas carols at the top of their voices into the early hours."
  • Mad Friday will be followed by Sozzled Saturday, as revellers celebrate Christmas Eve.
  • And then… next Saturday night is also New Year's Eve, so there's little let-up for Britain's town centres.

Although most towns are expecting a party atmosphere on Friday, authorities expect the usual trouble from those for whom alcohol and good times do not mix.

"Mad Friday really takes a turn for the worse at pub closing time," where office party survivors are wondering the streets, and aggression can easily come to the surface.

Just one misguided comment, or an argument over a taxi can lead to an all-out brawl that spoils the Festive Season for everyone.

And that's what police and emergency workers fear the worst, as aggressive drunks are both difficult and unpredictable to deal with and also an enormous waste of resources.

"That's the real tragedy about Mad Friday," says Ratcliffe, "The strain on the police force and the NHS is bad enough without what are – essentially – self-inflicted injuries."

There's a radical solution that bosses could consider, he says.

And that's making workers agree that their behaviour outside of work – especially at Christmas parties – reflects back on the company's reputation, making it subject to workplace discipline.

"It's an extreme approach," he says, "but the office party and the so-called 'last day of term' need to calm down a bit."

While letting your hair down is fine, Desk.co.uk says that something needs to be done about the people who go too far and spoil Christmas for everybody.

"Enjoy the party," he says, "But don't wreck the party."