Agenda item

Gambling Policy

The Committee is asked to consider the Gambling Policy.


The Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Chairman of the General Licensing Committee, the Resilience Officer and the Licensing Officer have been invited to attend for this item.


The Vice-Chairman-in-the-chair welcomed the Chairman of the Licensing Committee (who was also a Member of the Policy Development and Review Committee), the Resilience and Licensing Manager and the Licensing Officer to the meeting.


The Chairman of the Licensing Committee introduced the report, advised that it had been considered by the General Licensing Committee at their meeting on 18 July 2018 and he welcomed feedback from the Policy Development and Review Committee (PDRC) before going out to consultation. 


The Licensing Officer advised that historically, the Statement of Principles that Swale published was developed via the mechanism of the Kent & Medway Regulatory Licensing Steering Group and adapted to suit, but this draft Statement of Principles had been prepared using a model template recommended by the Gambling Commission.  She added that the Statement of Principles took into account the fifth edition of the Gambling Commission Guidance on preparing statements and spoke of the issues that operators must consider when preparing their risk assessments, as shown on pages 23-25 of the Agenda.


The Licensing Officer advised that the Local Area Profile, which identified risk to any gambling related harm, could be incorporated into the Statement of Principles or published separately, and the preferred option would be a separate document as it could be managed more efficiently.  She drew attention to the proposed wide consultation.


Pages 16/17


A Member suggested that the General Data Protection Regulations should be included at paragraph 24.


Pages 17/18


A Member raised concerns around the enforcement of the Policy, said that there were too many steps before a prosecution and the process should be shortened.  In the discussion that followed, the Licensing Officer clarified that the process was required, as part of the Regulators Code 2014, but not all stages needed to be followed.


Page 20


A Member asked what Swale Borough Council (SBC) were doing to prevent underage gambling and whether there was support for people who suffered with mental health issues and gambled?  In response, the Licensing Officer advised that complaints about under-age gambling were referred to Trading Standards to carry out test purchasing and action taken thereafter, and gambling premises displayed notices of help for addicts.  She said that gamblers had to self-exclude and were not banned by gambling premises.  The Licensing Officer advised that risk assessments were included in the Gambling Commissions Code.

Page 23


In response to a question from a Member, the Licensing Officer agreed to include schools in paragraph 50.


In response to a question from a Member, the Licensing Officer explained that Licence applications for Gambling premises could not be refused on density within an area, but Planning Regulations could consider this issue.  She added that Swale did not currently have an issue with a growth in Gambling premises compared to other geographical areas.


The Chairman of the General Licensing Committee advised that the consultees would include NHS services in Faversham, and Members highlighted the following typing errors:


Page 10, final paragraph, should read “The Cabinet Member for Regeneration…..”;

Page 20, incorrect numbering from paragraph 44 onwards;

Page 25, first paragraph after bullet points …..local area profiles created by the Council…..; and

Page 59, final paragraph, should read ….Alexander Centre (Faversham)….


The Vice-Chairman-in-the-chair thanked the Chairman of Licensing Committee, the Resilience and Licensing Manager and the Licensing Officer for their attendance.




(1)      Members noted the report.

(2)     That the comments made by the Committee be considered by the Cabinet Member for Regeneration for the final version of the Statement of Principles for Gambling 2019-2022 attached as Appendix I of the report, prior to an eight week consultation.

Supporting documents: