While people want to admit it or not, there are good points (yes, and some bad points) to FOBT’s (Fixed-odds betting terminals). But what if that £100 bet gets dropped down to just £2? Sure, most people who play them only play £1 or £2 bets so it won’t affect a lot of people, but it will affect the general turnover in the shop’s revenue. Will this mean we will see the closure of some bookies? Well…maybe, but it’s inevitable that will happen in the end anyway!
With growing business taxes to pay as well as increases in staff wages, training and perks the real-world bricks and mortar shops are sadly going to decline in numbers it is only a matter of time. While limiting the FOBT’s might speed this process up, or slow it down if the gambling bill amendments get rejected it is still going to happen. We might not even get so far as to see a robot in a betting shop taking your race order, it might already be 100% online before we get to that point!
For some people a betting shop (bookies) is much more than a shop to put a bet on, it’s about a human company, a social gathering point, after all, most bookies have tea, coffee and biscuits for their players! It doesn’t matter who good online betting is, it can never replace the community and hospitality of a bookies shop so I for one hope the amendments get rejected. Sure, it might not keep the betting shops open forever, but it will slow the process of them closing.