Peter Heaton-Jones believes rules on taking children out of school during term time should be relaxed

North Devon MP Peter Heaton-Jones has urged the Government to adopt a more flexible approach to the rules on school term time holidays to boost tourism.

Fifteen MPs spoke during a debate in Westminster on Monday, and called on the Government to reconsider the changes to the policy introduced in September 2013.

Mr Heaton-Jones said: "On some measures, one in six of all jobs in my constituency depend directly or indirectly on the tourism sector. It is a vital driver of the local economy, and many families work in it.

"It is out of the question for them to take their family vacation in the school holidays. It is their busiest time; they have to be at work. The introduction of the new guidance in 2013 meant that many of my constituents faced a double whammy—not only their business but their family life is suffering."

The debate was led by Steve Double, MP for St Austell and Newquay, and was called after a petition asking for parents to be allowed to take their children out of school for up to two weeks received more than 120,000 signatures.

The petition was supported by campaign group Parents Want a Say.