High street bookmakers have been thrown a vital lifeline, with the chancellor Rishi Sunak announcing they are now eligible for business rate relief.
The original policy, announced mid-March, stated that all leisure and hospitality sectors would qualify for a business rate holiday. However this did not at first include gambling, despite all retail firms being ordered to close.
After pressure from the Betting and Gaming Council the exemption was dropped. “On top of the help on employment, extending help on business rates to all businesses that have had to shut down is another much-needed shot in the arm that will help to protect tens of thousands of jobs,” said BGC chief exec, Michael Dugher.
Bookmakers are also eligible for 12-month interest free loans and a deferral of VAT payments.