Southend to get third casino?


Rank Group has released plans to open a new gambling centre in the Palace Hotel in Southend, Essex. If approved, this would create a third casino in the seaside town.

Derek Jarvis, the Tory councillor responsible for culture and tourism, said: “The seafront is a good location for another casino. There’s plenty of room and it will attract more visitors.

“It is fairly common for towns to develop ‘quarters’ which specialise in a certain form of entertainment, and gambling is just that – entertainment.”

Jonathan Garston, the Tory councillor responsible for planning, said: “I don’t think just opening another casino will make our town become a ‘gambling town’.

“By opening another casino, it is not going to create more gamblers. It is simply going to attract people to the town from a wider catchment area.

“The current casinos are very well-run and, as a councillor, I don’t have any complaints about antisocial behaviour, which can be the case for other late-night venues.”

Although Rank still has to secure a permit from the Gambling Commission and an alcohol licence from Southend Council before it can press ahead, it hopes to keep the new casino open 24 hours a day.


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