More COVID-19 forced closures
Casinos and betting shops in Nottingham, parts of Nottinghamshire, and Warrington are to close their doors as the regions adopt top-tier COVID-19 restrictions. They join other areas of the UK, such as Greater Manchester and the Liverpool City Region, which have already implemented Tier 3 measures this month.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson laid out England’s three-tier system earlier this month
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson laid out England’s three-tier system earlier this month in an effort to combat rising numbers of COVID-19 cases. Under the system’s highest tier, all betting shops and casinos must close. All pubs and bars must also shut, unless they are serving “substantial meals”.
The restrictions in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire are due to come into effect at one minute past midnight on Thursday. Warrington, meanwhile, entered the third tier of restrictions at 12:01am on Tuesday.
Other Tier 3 lockdowns
According to The Guardian, around 8.2 million people will be living under Tier 3 restrictions by the end of this week after the latest measures take effect. A total of six English regions will have introduced the restrictions.
On October 14, casinos and betting shops in the Liverpool City Region were the first to close as a result of England’s new three-tier system. Commenting on the new restrictions at the time, Liverpool Chamber of Commerce CEO Paul Cherpeau described the region’s businesses as “bewildered, frustrated and angry.”
The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) also criticized the “hugely disappointing” announcement which would affect hundreds of betting shops and six casinos.
Greater Manchester and South Yorkshire implemented Tier 3 restrictions last weekend. The combined betting and gaming sectors of the two regions employ around 4,250 people and contribute approximately £119.2m ($155.4m) in funds to the UK Treasury each year. The BGC accused the government of acting in an “ill-informed and arbitrary manner” in ordering the closure of casinos and betting shops.
Further lockdowns incoming?
England’s casino properties have only been open since August 15 following the country’s first COVID-19 lockdown introduced in March. The government permitted all betting shops to reopen earlier, in June. Rising cases could see more properties forced to close down again across the country.
According to the Department of Health and Social Care, the number of UK cases of COVID-19 has reached 894,690, while the total number of deaths within 28 days of a positive test currently stands at 44,998. On Monday, the UK recorded 20,890 new cases of the virus and 102 deaths.
registering more than 13,000 new cases per week
In particular, London is seeing a significant rise in cases with the city registering more than 13,000 new cases per week. The capital is currently in Tier 2, which permits its 24 casinos and hundreds of betting shops to remain open for business. There is currently a 10pm to 5am curfew in place for all leisure and entertainment facilities across England, including casinos.