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Notice of an application to convert No 248 Green Lanes into a betting shop has been published in the Legal Notices section of the most recent issue of the Enfield Independent.  People falling into specified categories have until 23rd April if they wish to make representations in writing to the London Borough of Enfield Licensing Team, Civic Centre, Silver Street, EN1 3XH.  The categories are: a person living sufficiently close to the premises to likely be affected; a person who has a business interest that might be affected; and a person representing someone in the first two categories.

 

The premises in question is the ground floor of the Trios Banqueting Suite, situated between Holland & Barrett and Laiki Bank and thus directly facing Palmers Green Triangle.  Less than a year ago a successful campaign was waged against a bid to turn another empty shop on the Triangle into a betting shop, so it seems likely that protesters will again turn out to demonstrate against the proliferation of bookmakers' shops along this stretch of Green Lanes.

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Karl Brown's Avatar
Karl Brown posted a reply #36 17 Apr 2013 12:39
The Green Lanes Business Assocaition have consistently opposed further betting shops within Palmers Green. An open consultation exercise coordinated by local groups including the Business Association and Fox Lane Residents Association a couple of years back resulted in numerous spontaneous comments rejecting further betting shops within the limited shop portfolio within Palmers Green.
The Business Association have indicated they expect our local MP to be joined by local councillors on the Triangle between 130 and 230 Friday 19th April to highlight opposition to this latest move to increase the numbers of betting shops in the community.
all are free to join.
Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #39 20 Apr 2013 18:20
There was a relatively small group of protesters, including David Burrowes MP and Costas Georgiou of the Green Lanes Business Association. who assembled to show their opposition to yet another application for a betting office. Passers by crossing at the Triangle expressed support for the campaign, but we all I think recognise that the answer to this problem lies with central government, which needs to give local communities and local councils the power to control such applications.
Basil Clarke's Avatar
Basil Clarke posted a reply #42 01 May 2013 22:05
The whole issue of proliferation of particular types of shop in an area - particularly betting shops and payday loan merchants - has been highlighted by both Labour and Conservative politicians recently, so it could be that there will be some welcome changes to the law, which currently doesn't seem to give local councils much power to intervene.

Ed Miliband's local election campaign speech on 8th April contained a call to give councils powers "so that local people can have a say about which type of shops they want to see and which they don’t" and implied that a future Labour government would do this. See this
New Statesman article.

Closer to home, Conservative MP David Burrowes is quoted as saying that Enfield Council needs to "get some teeth when it comes to considering these applications and getting an Article 4 direction would be a good start".
"Article 4" directions can be used to force developers to apply for planning permission in cases where it would not normally be required, but central government would only agree to an Article 4 direction "in exceptional circumstances" in order to prevent "harm" to "local amenity". Unfortunately, there is nothing in in the guidelines Guidelines issued by the Department for Communities and Local Government that would suggest that Enfield Council woud have a sufficiently strong case for an Article 4 direction.

Bowes and Bounds United recently drew attention to a Twitter spat between Burrowes and Labour councillor Alan Sitkin, which produced more heat than light, but at least showed agreement about the objective of reining back this kind of proliferation.

On the other hand, the Independent 's deputy economics editor seems to oppose any such moves on the grounds that betting shop numbers are already in decline nationwide and hastening this decline would lead to more empty shopfronts. Meanwhile, the Association of British Bookmakers is resisting a campaign to reduce maximum slot machine stakes, claiming that it would result in national government losing £650 million in tax and local government £60 million in business rates. Whether or not these estimates are realistic, it seems likely that moves to reduce the number of betting shops would reduce both national and local revenues, a factor which could well sway politicians on all sides.

All in all, then, we can't be confident that either the Coalition or Labour would take the necessary steps to stem this flood. So if you have strong feelings, you should make them known, one way of doing so being to answer the survey that David Burrowes recently sent out to his constituents.

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