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UK delays the reopening of land-based casinos

31 July 2020

After announcing on 17 July that land-based casinos would be able to reopen on 1 August, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson today postponed plans to allow "high-risk venues such as casinos, bowling alleys and ice rinks" to reopen on Saturday.

They will have to wait at least another two weeks, he said.

“Our assessment is that we should now squeeze that brake pedal in order to keep the virus under control,” Johnson said in a press conference on Friday. “We cannot be complacent. I won’t stand by and allow this virus to cause more pain and more heartache in our country.”

The decision was questioned by Betting and Gaming Council CEO Michael Dugher on Twitter:

"There is no evidence that casinos are “higher risk” venues + what happened to the Govt’s local lockdown strategy? Why should a casino business remain closed in Bristol in the south west, where Covid is low, because there’s a spike in greater Manchester? Big threat to jobs."

Meanwhile, in Scotland, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced a "provisional date" of 24 August for the country’s casinos and bingo halls to reopen

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