Bookies have become the scourge of many a British town centre in recent times. Much to the chagrin of William Hill chief Ralph Topping, the London Borough of Haringey already has a public meeting scheduled next month to discuss the amount of shops in their borough. One Northern country have beaten London to it though.
Our scene is Flintshire, a county in the North East of Wales, specifically the coastal town of Holywell. Councillors have taken it upon themselves to prevent another betting shop being built in the town – there are currently two. Never having been to Flintshire, let alone Holywell, I haven’t a clue what it’s like there. Is there much of a community spirit? Which two companies have betting shops there already? After extensive Internet research, it transpires William Hill are one company without one. You wait until Ralph hears about this!
This does back up the notion that iGaming is the way forward. The high street bookie will of course always have a place, but with towns increasingly rejecting the opening of new branches, diversification into online and mobile gaming is the obvious future.