The organisation I work for, Bristol based environmental charity City to Sea, has recently moved to a four day-working week, without any reduction in pay for staff. We've also been officially accredited as a 'Gold Standard' four-day week employer under the 4 Day Week Campaign's accreditation scheme that recognises four-day week employers in the UK.

For me, as a Dad and a local Green Party District Councillor this has enabled me to dedicate more time to my family and my community. It has helped my mental and physical health. And crucially, it has helped me be more productive at work.

This isn't just me, let alone City to Sea. Numerous studies have shown that moving to a four-day week boosts productivity and workers’ wellbeing. When Microsoft trialled a four-day week with no loss of pay in their Japan office, productivity went up by 40%. Last year, Atom Bank became the largest UK four-day week employer with all 430 staff moving to a four-day, 34 hour working week, with no reduction in pay.

Over 60 companies have signed-up to the UK's biggest ever four-day week pilot which begins in June. The pilot is being run by 4 Day Week Global in partnership with leading think tank Autonomy, the 4 Day Week Campaign and researchers at Cambridge University, Oxford University and Boston College.

We are increasingly being challenged by automation and need to think about how we respond to this that can aim to keep people in employment in a way that is fulfilling and pays enough.

We've experimented with zero hour contracts and seen the disastrous affect this has on worker's rights. It strikes me that the time is right now for more companies to be trialling a 4 day working week.

So is the time now for more Stroud employers to become a 4 day a week employer?

I hope so because I've seen first hand how it can transform that work/life balance.

Cllr Steve Hynd