|A lightening of restrictions on gambling in Britain looks set to offer casinos and betting shops new avenues in expansion and respectability. A new report from Sir Alan Budd, former chief economic advisor to the treasury proposes the easing of restrictions on casinos in the U.K, as well as the liberalization of regulations on online gambling and betting shops.|
The report, which was delivered to the new secretary of state for sport, media and culture, Tessa Jowell, outlines a number of changes including the abolishment of the 24-hour membership rule and allowing casinos to provide live entertainment similar to the Las Vegas style of casino. Other changes include allowing casinos to have more than ten slot machines, which is where the limit currently stands and allowing them to build outside of the 40 year old selected sites that they are still restricted to today.
The report also considers the concern of underage gambling, as well as gambling in pubs, which Budd has not recommended. The report has received both good and bad reviews- some worry that these new openings could see areas in Blackpool and Lancashire subject to a Las-Vegas style invasion. Others welcome the report as an opportunity to regulate gambling and transform it into a valid branch of the entertainment industry.
A Source from the culture was quoted as saying “We wanted to see if liberalization could be brought in while at the same time protecting the vulnerable and excluding crime.”