Northampton MP Binley calls on House to recognise importance of bingo

Brian Binley calling numbers at Beacon Bingo, Weedon Road
Brian Binley calling numbers at Beacon Bingo, Weedon Road

Northampton South MP, Brian Binley, has handed in a 300,000-signature petition to the Treasury following a campaign to reduce bingo duty from 20 per cent to 15 per cent.

The Boost Bingo campaign is calling for the Government to lower what Mr Binley and other MPs, as well as hundreds of thousands of members of the public, say is an excessive tax burden which is preventing investment and job creation.

Mr Binley, chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Bingo, said: “300,000 signatures is a massive amount and I am delighted there have been so many people that have supported fairness for the bingo player.

“I have always been unhappy that such an innocuous form of gambling should be charged a 20 per cent rate of tax while all other forms are charged only 15 per cent.

“Having attended the bingo hall near Franklin’s Gardens, I know that many people, including the elderly, are able to get a hot meal at a low cost in a warm atmosphere and play an innocent game of bingo while making friends and acquaintances.

“I am really hopeful that the Chancellor will take notice of our petition.”

The bingo industry generates more than £200 million in tax revenue for the Government each year, employs 12,500 people and includes almost 400 licensed bingo clubs across Great Britain.

Miles Baron, chief executive of The Bingo Association, said: “Reducing bingo duty will enable clubs to invest in their future. More investment means more jobs and more thriving bingo communities.

“If bingo duty is lowered from 20 per cent to 15 per cent, the industry as a whole has committed to substantial investment in modernisation and jobs.

“We hope that by receiving hundreds of thousands of petition signatures, the Government will realise this is something that really matters to the British public and lower bingo duty.”