Petition against more betting shops

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chalkey Sunday 19 February 2012 8.21pm
'Herding' estate agents to one end of town is pretty usual. I agree there are more of them than would seem necessary, especially in the current market. But I don't think there are many new ones starting up these days, if any. However, The little shopping strip up the road from me has a Ladbrokes and a Coral bookmakers directly opposite each other, and there are never more than a handful of punters in either shop at any one time. Lo and behold, another one is about to open less than 25 yards away. In defence of estate agents, (I used to be one,) there are some properties on sale with some agents that are not with others. ('Sole agency.)But as a punter of many years standing, who does 99 percent of his punting on-line, I cannot for the life of me see how a third betting office in a tiny area can hope to attract sufficient custom to survive. If they think they can attract business by offering better odds, then I can assure them they'll go the same way as an acquaintance of mine who tried the same in rural Lincolnshire. They'll go bust. With my small stakes I wouldn't cross the road the get half a point better odds, but those who bet in thousands would, and do.
boroughonian Sunday 19 February 2012 9.33pm
I think the poker and roulette machines are what make these outlets profitable,you really only need a handful of punters on them things,people spend fortunes on them and that's why,in my opinion,they now open at 9am rather than 10:30/11ish as they used to be.
I have seen eyewatering amounts of money going over the counter in exchange for credit on the machine,I guess eyewatering amounts can be won also...now and again.
chalkey Sunday 19 February 2012 9.58pm
If you play against a machine, there's only ever gonna be one winner.....Not you. Unless, of course, you walk in, pop in a coin, win the jackpot and walk straight out.
A colleague of mine, who was on my team in the money market many years ago, went off one Friday lunchtime for his, 'sunshine drinks,' prior to going away on holiday (You weren't expected to return to the office when you were on 'sunshine drinks.')
Four hours later I stopped of at a popular watering hole to have a quick drink before catching the train home, and there was my colleague, putting coins in to the 'fruit machine' like there was no tomorrow. Before I'd finished my drink he'd spent his last coin and said to me, "What am I going to tell '*******'? (his wife.) He'd blown the holiday spending money on that one machine, convinced he had to win the jackpot by the very fact of how much he'd put in to it throughout the previous 3 to 4 hours.
I kid you not.
Sadly, I'm sure there are many more like him out there.
gossipgirl99 Saturday 10 March 2012 8.31am
The Cllr should work harder at protecting social services etc and worry less about betting shops. Southwark council has a pretty robust policy on gambling she should trust her colleagues and not distract people from more serious problems in Southwark.
beverly Monday 12 March 2012 2.12pm
I just don't get this debate at all. It seems to me really patronising to assume that people who happen to live in a 'poor' area are incapable of spending responsibly. We seldom hear of a campaign to reduce the numbers of gambling clubs/casinos in areas like Mayfair and yet people literally lose millions in these places. Is this another case of misguided politicians wanting to control the 'feckless poor'? It is a shame they did not have the same interest in contolling the banking and investment industry before it gambled away our cash/pensions!

Politicians would do better to ask serious questions as to why 'the poor' are poor but maybe they fear hearing the answers!

As to the concern about the proliferation of bookies in more affluent areas, is this not simply down to good old fashioned snobbery?
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