Move to curb betting shop increase will help High Streets, says MP

May 07, 2014

Ministers are preparing changes to legislation that will give local authorities the power to scrutinise proposals for new betting shops before they are allowed to open.

Betting shops currently do not require planning permission to open. The government is also to look at controls on gambling advertising and protections for players on fixed-odds betting terminals.

Mr Stewart, whose Milton Keyes South constituency includes Bletchley, said: “I know that the amount of betting shops that have been setting up on Queensway has been a big concern for residents and other businesses in Bletchley. This move will give the power for residents and local authorities to have a much bigger say.

“I know the government is keen to help and promote healthy and successful High Streets and has done this in the right way.

"This was an issue that needed serious attention and a decision based on careful considerations of evidence, not the knee jerk reaction some were asking for.”

The initiatives from Whitehall are part of the government’s wider commitment to revitalise town centres.

Planning Minister Nick Boles, who has visited Woburn Sands and Wolverton in the past two months, said: “This is part of a wider set of measures designed to get empty and redundant buildings back into productive use and make it easier for valued town centre businesses like shops, banks and cafes to open new premises, while giving councils greater powers to tackle the harm to local amenity caused by a concentration of particular uses.” 

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