English betting shops to reopen from lockdown

Posted:: May 29, 2020 12:12 Category: Regulatory , Europe , Posted by Jeremy Micallef

Whilst all English non-essential retailers can reopen, Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland will provide their own lockdown easing directives

Betting shops in England should be on course to reopen from 15 June, after further plans to ease COVID-19 lockdown measures have been announced by the UK Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of the UK.

Boris Johnson said all non-essential retailers, including betting shops, can reopen on the scheduled date, providing ongoing progress in curbing coronavirus spread.

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, all UK stores not considered ‘essential’, including casinos, betting shops and bingo clubs, were ordered to shut down on 20 March.

The reopening of betting shops from mid-June applies only to England, with Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland providing their own lockdown easing measures.

Following talks between the country’s government and the Irish Bookmakers Association, betting shops are expected to open on June 29th.

Businesses will only be able to open, following consultation with trade union representatives or workers, once they have completed a risk assessment and are confident they are managing the risks, the government said. They must have taken the necessary steps to become ‘COVID-19 secure’ in line with current legislation on health and safety.

Shops would be expected to open with social distancing measures in place and regular hand washing and surface cleaning, restricted activity time, screens to distinguish customers, and limited capacity operation where appropriate.

The reopening is set to coincide with Royal Ascot, which will feature 36 races from June 16-20.

With William Hill saying earlier this month it is planning a ‘staged opening’ of its retail estate in the second half of the year, it’s likely betting shops will open slowly.

There were just under 37,000 COVID-19 related deaths reported in the United Kingdom as of 26 May.


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