Law’s on our side, say betting shop battlers


[from Hornsey and Crouch End Journal]

Law’s on our side, say betting shop battlers

nlnews@archant.co.uk
10 December 2008

CAMPAIGNERS trying to fend off clusters of betting shops in Green Lanes are hoping new legislation will strengthen their cause.

Ian Sygrave, chairman of the Ladder Community Safety Partnership in Harringay, said he hoped the Government would follow through with plans to give local councils the power to stop the groups of bookies forming.

The consequences of having numbers of betting shops and adult gaming centres, such as increases in crime rates, are already being felt in Haringey.

Just last week the LCSP and other groups revealed they had gathered more than 450 signatures against adult gaming centre Agora’s bid to potentially triple the number of high-value games machines in their premises in Green Lanes, which offer £500 prizes for a £1 bet.

Haringey Council has yet to consider the application, but last week Prime Minister Gordon Brown set out plans to give local councils powers to “prevent the clustering of betting shops in areas where this is a problem” in a wide-ranging reforms package.

Mr Sygrave said: “It may be too late for this application, but it does at least mean that the lobby has been heard. It would mean that there would be no more in Green Lanes and Tottenham High Road and so on. In the long term a change in the law is the way forward.

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