Different types of leave

There are various types of leave, please see the the FAQs below for further guidance on leave.

Armed Forces Reservists may be entitled to special leave, for example, for training purposes. Please contact your employing board and the Deanery Team to discuss this further.

Your annual leave entitlement will be noted in your contract of employment from NES.

Your annual leave is allocated on a pro rata basis per rotational placement.  This means that you must endeavour to take your allocated leave during any given placement. You will not be permitted to carry over accrued but unused annual leave entitlement into subsequent rotational placements and/or between leave years, save in exceptional circumstances.

If you are in Less Than Full Time Training your entitlement shall be pro-rata proportionate to your hours of work. For example, if you are working less than full time at 60% and work on a Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, you are entitled to a pro rata Bank Holiday entitlement based on the standard ten days which can be taken at another time.

Although an entitlement, all annual leave must be arranged and approved in accordance with the local arrangements in your placement Board/General Practice.

Please see attached circular setting out designated Christmas and New Year public holidays for 2021, as these days fall on a weekend. Circular is applicable to Agenda for Change staff and sets out the alternative days but also the principles of payment where an employee does/does not work the weekend days.

Your entitlement to public/ statutory holidays is defined in your contract, usually it is an entitlement of 10 public holidays per annum, subject to local agreements which you can confirm with your placement Board.  When you are required to work on one of these days on a rostered basis you will be entitled to a day off in lieu. [If you work part-time, you will be entitled to public holidays or days in lieu on a pro rata basis according to the number of hours you work compared with full time hours.]

You will be entitled to take the agreed public holidays that fall during your employment period. If you are part time your entitlement is then pro rata.

Where a zero hours day falls on a public holiday, the public holiday is to be taken and the zero hours day is to be taken at a mutually agreeable time within the rota cycle as agreed by the placement Board/ General Practice and the Doctor in Training.


It is recognised that parents have a joint responsibility for the care and upbringing of their children and that work and parenthood can create conflicting pressures. Parental leave is therefore aimed at encouraging a culture of flexible working practice to assist staff to balance family and work commitments.

Currently all employees will be eligible to take parental leave if:

  • They have 12 months’ continuous service with one or more NHS employers;
  • They have a nominated caring responsibility for a child under age 18;
  • Provide evidence of entitlement

The amount of parental leave entitlement is 18 weeks for each child under the age of 18.

The 18-week entitlement is per each child, not per employment. In other words, the balance of the entitlement is not restored to 18 weeks if an individual changes employer. For example, if an employee uses 10 weeks of their entitlement with one employer, and then changes employer, they can only use up to eight weeks with their new employer, assuming that they are eligible. Eligibility for parental leave transfers between employers on a cumulative basis.

Both mothers and fathers can take parental leave.

Part time staff are entitled to parental leave on a pro-rata basis based on the hours they work at the time of taking leave and not to exceed 18 weeks in total. (e.g. a member of staff working 28 hours a week would be entitled to 18 weeks at 28 hours).

Employees who meet the eligibility requirements will be entitled to a total of 18 weeks parental leave, for each child. Four weeks of the 18-week entitlement will be paid leave. The paid leave must be taken before the relevant child’s 14th birthday (or 18th birthday in the case of adoptive parents or parents of a child with a disability). Any parental leave which is taken after the 14th birthday (but before the 18th birthday) of the relevant child will be unpaid.

For further information on how to apply for parental leave, please contact medical staffing in your Placement Board.


You are required to notify the placement Board as soon as possible where it becomes apparent it is difficult to take annual leave due to staffing or service issues.

Any leave not taken within the relevant leave year will not be routinely carried over into the subsequent leave year. The placement Board in consultation with NES will only agree the carryover of a maximum of five days’ annual leave inclusive of days in lieu of public holidays worked in very exceptional circumstances. If the carryover of this leave overlaps with a rotation, approval must be obtained from both placement Boards and/or the General Practice placement in consultation with NES.

For updated guidance to Annual Leave entitlement during the Covid 19 pandemic, please click on this link.

Please also see attached circular setting out designated Christmas and New Year public holidays for 2021, as these days fall on a weekend. Circular is applicable to Agenda for Change staff and sets out the alternative days but also the principles of payment where an employee does/does not work the weekend days.


If your interviews are within the four week period before your contract is due to expire, we will allow you reasonable paid time off to attend (see NES Fixed Term Policy).  Any interviews attended earlier than this four week period may be covered by annual leave or unpaid leave.  Bear in mind however that by using unpaid leave your training time may have to be extended as a result. Adequate notice must be given and approval must be obtained from both placement Boards and/or the General Practice placement.

You should maintain a log of your annual leave.

If you are in a practice placement, a standard leave request form can be downloaded here. If you are in a hospital placement they will provide you with the appropriate form. 

Forms should be completed by the employee and authorised by the manager / supervisor. Forms do not need to be submitted to NES HR.

If you are elected to represent other GP Specialist Trainees on recognised bodies or to attend the annual conference of representatives of LNCs you will be given facilities including special paid leave, to undertake such functions and to attend appropriate meetings.  You must obtain the consent of NES and your placement Board/ General Practice (clinical supervisor/trainer/educational supervisor) to each absence from duty but consent shall not be withheld unless there are exceptional circumstances in the reasonable opinion of placement Board/ General Practice and NES. You should wherever possible inform NES and your placement Board/ General Practice of any such commitments before you commence your attachment. When agreed such absences shall be considered as included in working time commitment.  If such commitments significantly impact upon your learning an extension to training may be required at the discretion of the Director of Postgraduate GP Education.

Special leave should be requested from your placement board for this. Please ensure you also made the Deanery aware to allow them review the impact on training time. If you are in a general practice placement, please complete and return this form to NES HR by going to https://nesdigital.atlassian.net/servicedesk/customer/portal/30 and submitting a support request.