Published On: Thu, Mar 27th, 2014 on 1:26 pm

Kirklees betting shop planning applications could be turned down in future

Betting Shop UK

A request has been made for parliament to give greater powers for councils to turn down applications for betting premises, as concerns have arisen over the number of betting shops in Kirklees.

Presented by the Campaign for Fairer Gambling to the House of Commons last year, it was reported that almost £12 million was lost on betting machines in Kirklees.

It was also reported that England’s poorest spend £13 billion a year on the machines, and it is believed that the concentration of betting shops in towns like Dewsbury is helping contribute to community decline.

The Kirklees Labour Party have called the government to change the “use class” of betting shops so that an application can be decided in its own right.

Cllr Paul Kane of the Dewsbury East Ward said: “The proposal has been submitted under the Sustainable Communities Act.

“The government is considering it right now, we urge the government to listen to the community and the unfortunate relations of people who are addicted to the gambling machines which wreak havoc with people’s life.”

Under existing guidelines betting shops are classed as A2 (‘financial and professional services’), which means they can open up without planning permission in premises which previously housed such a venture, for example a bank, estate agent or an employment agency.

Re-classifying betting shops would mean residents and councillors could have a say in every application made.

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