Greenwich Council calls for action after spread of 53 betting shops across borough

News Shopper: Greenwich Council calls for action after spread of 53 betting shops across borough Greenwich Council calls for action after spread of 53 betting shops across borough

GREENWICH Council has called for action on the spread of betting shops in the area.

There are currently 53 across the borough, including 13 in Eltham, 12 in Woolwich and nine Plumstead outlets.

At the moment applicants wanting to open a betting shop are only required to apply for a licence rather than planning permission.

It means council usually cannot take into account the number of existing bookies in the area - leading to a call from all Greenwich councillors for the government to introduce a separate planning use class, meaning planning permission would be required.

A motion, backed by councillors of all parties, was passed at last week's council meeting.

Cabinet member for community safety and environment Councillor Maureen O'Mara said: "While we don’t oppose responsible gambling or betting shops per se, it is crucial to ensure that betting shop operators aren’t able to populate high streets too heavily, and indeed to ensure that areas of deprivation aren’t specifically targeted by operators to exploit those more likely to gamble because they are short of funds.

"Councils up and down the country have their hands tied on this issue by the current laws – this isn’t a problem unique to Greenwich and we urge the government to make a sensible decision and to change the law so applications for new betting shops can be fully and democratically scrutinised."

Comments (3)

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3:13pm Tue 24 Dec 13

cookster says...

I honestly thought Betfair and the likes would have killed off the high street betting shop by now.
I honestly thought Betfair and the likes would have killed off the high street betting shop by now. cookster

4:13pm Tue 24 Dec 13

HearTheFacts says...

So what's best an empty boarded up shop on the high street. Or a betting shop, do betting shops increase the risk of more gambling?.

It's the same old argument, councils cannot dictate as to what shops are openned. It's called supply and demand.

It's takeaways, pubs or betting shops, or could it be estate agents. in an ideal world a balance of shops would be great. But all businesses have to be viable, open a shoe shop is there a demand?.

Councils could do more by reducing business rates, for certain businesses. But is this legal?. It's comes back to the same issue ' supply and demand '.
So what's best an empty boarded up shop on the high street. Or a betting shop, do betting shops increase the risk of more gambling?. It's the same old argument, councils cannot dictate as to what shops are openned. It's called supply and demand. It's takeaways, pubs or betting shops, or could it be estate agents. in an ideal world a balance of shops would be great. But all businesses have to be viable, open a shoe shop is there a demand?. Councils could do more by reducing business rates, for certain businesses. But is this legal?. It's comes back to the same issue ' supply and demand '. HearTheFacts

5:11pm Thu 26 Dec 13

white rabbit9 says...

Promises of dreams through gambling. The house always wins.
Promises of dreams through gambling. The house always wins. white rabbit9

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