Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport Memoranda


Memorandum submitted by the Scottish Licensed Trade Association

  The Scottish Licensed Trade Association was formed in 1880, is the only body representing all sectors of the Licensed Retail Trade in Scotland and with over 2,200 members is recognised by many as the voice of the Licensed Trade in Scotland.

  The Association has three core functions—trade development, trade protection and trade liaison. The Association works with, and in many cases has representation on, various groups such as the Criminal Justice Forum; Excise Alliance; Local Authorities; Liquor Licensing Boards; Scottish Tourism Forum and many more. The SLTA has formed a close working relationship with The Scottish Executive and is consulted on all issues concerning the Licensed Trade in Scotland. Only recently the President of The SLTA was invited by the Deputy First Minister and Minister of Justice, The Rt Hon Jim Wallace QC MSP, to sit on the Scottish Liquor Licensing Law Review Committee.

  The Association expressed it's concerns regarding the Government Review on Gambling to the Rt Hon Richard Caborn MP, Minister for Sport back in October 2001.

  The Association is still very much concerned that it would appear that Public Houses, "pubs", are being singled out and will see little or no benefit from the proposals, compared with other entertainment premises which could substantially benefit.

  Over the years the services provided by the Liquor Licensed Trade have been "poached" by other establishments, and it is about time, the balance was redressed. For example betting shops now have A.W.P. Machines, can serve food and soft drinks, how long will it be before they are permitted to serve alcohol?

  With regard to the introduction of statutory age controls, the Licensed Trade, which already operates in a very strict and controlled environment, fully supports this view. The members of this Association do not perceive that there is a problem with under 18's playing AWP machines in Licensed Premises, but would suggest that Registered Clubs should have far stricter controls. Individuals under 18 can play in these premises where the jackpot is far higher than that in Licensed Premises and very often there is little or no control over this. In fact we would question that if a registered club is considered as "an extension of one's home" would one really have an AWP machine in his or her own dwelling.

  In the interests of fair competition and non-discrimination, we would advocate that payout levels should be the same in all premises.

  AWP machines area a part of the traditional leisure facilities offered within the Licensed Trade. These premises have unjustly been singled out within the report for restructuring gaming activities. On the other hand, casinos, bingo halls, and betting offices have opportunity for widespread liberalisation of AWP machine facilities. Members of The Scottish Licensed Trade Association are simply asking for parity with other entertainment establishments in order to survive in this extremely competitive market.

  Copy of letter to Rt Hon Richard Caborn MP.[ not printed]

2nd May 2002

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