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The government are deciding the future of your local bookie – please show your support to keep bookies open

The government has published a consultation on the future of betting shops and gaming machines which could result in half of all betting shops closing. Hundreds of you have already emailed your MP to ask them to support your local bookie, however we need you to email them again to make our voice heard. Gaming machines now play an important part of the mix of products in a betting shop, helping keep many of them open at a time when their numbers are falling.

While it is right that responsible gambling concerns are addressed in the government consultation, the government’s own independent advice is that a stake on gaming machines as low as £2 could create a variety of unintended and potentially harmful consequences. The vast majority of people gamble responsibly, but if some of the impacts as seen in the press occur, there would be 4,500 betting shops closed, 21,000 jobs lost, £1 billion lost in taxes and £290 million lost to horse racing as a consequence of a move to the lowest stake – this is too big price to pay. The government should not destroy an enjoyable pastime for many millions of people when the evidence shows that it will not reduce levels of problem gambling.

Please support your local bookie and the many staff employed there by emailing your MP. If you have already emailed your MP please do so again, it is only by maintaining the pressure that MPs will listen.

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