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25/07/2002 No.19
he Good Gambler
The Editor or one of our professional correspondants make regular contributions to coverage of the gambling world.
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Henry VIII started gambling law
Slot machines will change casinos in the UK
Nothing To Lose?

Governement Ramblings on Gambling Future

In 1541 Henry VIII past an Act that prohibited the lower classes from gambling on certain games that were easy to play. His noble idea was to stop people wasting time so that they could practice archery and defend England. Its all been down hill from there.

In 1845 a new Gaming Act came in to make bets unenforceable in Law. So if your friend, casino or bookmaker decides to not pay a winner, tough. Nothing you can do about it.

1960 saw another Gaming Act legalise betting offices and casinos. That got out of hand so the new 1968 Act established the Gaming Board and a 1000 small casinos disappeared in a couple of years. That was the last time any change to the basic law of gambling has occured.

Now the government has spent 2 years and a lot of tax payers money 'swanning about' the country and world to come up with a bag of not very much. They've been to Vegas, Scotland, Holland, Washington and a host of other places. Documents on this, research on that. "Eminent" people from the gambling world with vested interests have put their case for change to the commitees.

Now the latest document served up by the DCMS (Department running the gambling show now) seems to signal that they all get what they want, except that is for one group. The poor people of Blackpool will not be becoming the Atlantic City of the North. Like it ever was?!

So here's what you are going to get.

New Games: Well they are already here and a poor lot they are. (new games section)

Alcohol on the Gaming Floor: Its here too but Stanley Casino Group have already taken it away. This will have a rocky ride and what fun people are having trying to go backwards.

Credit Cards: Yes you guessed it, now you can never run out of money. The electronic loan sharks will be there to help you.

Live Entertainment: Yes you will be able to see live Acts for the first time since 1968.

Slot Machines: These will mushroom, 8 slots for every gaming table in the casino. Super casinos can have as many as they want with unlimited prizes. Bye bye card rooms.

Online Gambling: Will be regulated and have approved Kitemarks to show they are British. Actually not a bad idea.

Other Gambling: Money control on bingo will be removed and rollovers allowed. Unlimited rollovers on pools betting.

Gambling Debts: To become enforceable by law. At last and I had something to do with it! (Crow)

Resort Casinos: No special status for places like Blackpool. Anynew casinos can use the new laws to become a resort but the local government will not have the ability to aply extra taxation as with Atlantic City in New Jersey.

The one thing not addressed by any part of the government papers is consumer protection. If the casinos can do it to you, they can and will.