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24 July 2012
Responding to the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee report on gambling, Cllr Clyde Loakes, Vice Chair of the LGA's Environment and Housing Board, said:
“While it is an important step that the CMS Committee has recognised that the clustering of betting shops is a concern for local people, their response to the problem is completely illogical. It's clearly not sensible to increase the number of slot machines in betting shops to tackle the problem of too many slot machines.
“Councils and local residents have consistently argued for greater powers to address clustering, but this has been overlooked. Clusters of any type of premise, from bookies, to fast food takeaways to strip clubs, can be harmful to growth as it drives people away from their local high streets. It is often a local issue, and so this is best served by a local solution – whether this is through the use class system or reform of complex 'Article 4 directions'.”