Betting shops can be found all over the UK and are an essential part of Britain’s high streets.

While many people have negative connotations with betting shops, they’re actually incredibly important to the United Kingdom and its people, find out why by reading on.


Betting Shops & High Streets

A majority of all betting shops in the UK are found on high streets. Over the last few years, many high street retail shops have closed for good and reports have continuously claimed that high street shops are struggling. Studies, however, have shown that betting shops actually help boost foot traffic at high street shops. Research undertaken prior to the Covid-19 pandemic and published through the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) website revealed that 82% of betting shop customers visited shops once a week and that 89% of those customers went on to visit a high street retail store.

The research suggests that the existence of betting shops on high streets actually help local retail shops, with a majority of bettors visiting other shops and potentially making purchases there. Brigid Simmonds OBE, the Chair of the BGC, even went on to state that betting shops help “build up and maintain local economies” and that they have helped keep high streets alive.

Betting Contributes To UK Economy & Employment

In addition to helping local businesses, betting and betting shops contribute massively to the UK and its economy. Reports have stated that the regulated betting industry paid nearly £1 billion in tax last year, and an EY report commissioned by the BGC revealed that its members, comprising betting shops, casinos, and online services, contributed £3.2 billion in tax to the Exchequer in 2019. 

What’s more, betting shops contribute to UK employment, with all of the UK’s betting shops supporting 46,000 jobs. The number rises to 61,000 if you encompass all of gambling, and a further 58,000 jobs when gambling supply chains are included too.

All of the above shows just how important betting shops are to the UK; they help boost local businesses, contribute to the UK economy, and help create hundreds of thousands of jobs across the nation. However you feel about betting shops, you cannot deny how much they contribute to the UK.

Will Betting Shops Ever Be Replaced By Online Sportsbooks?

Betting shops’ popularity are paralleled by that of online sportsbooks, which, according to, allow you to place bets on your favourite sports games and events online. Over the last year, online sportsbooks have become incredibly more popular, providing people with ways of betting from the comfort of their own home while enjoying numerous promotions and bonuses.

Although playing at online sportsbooks can be much more convenient and offers more content, it doesn’t provide gamers with the same experience found at betting shops. A majority of gamblers in the UK see gambling as a social activity, and that’s something online sportsbooks cannot offer. Old school betting shops can, however, and that’s exactly why so many people enjoy visiting them on a regular basis, and in turn potentially visit retail shops.

Betting shops are here to stay, no matter how popular online sportsbooks get, and that’s a good thing. Betting shops are important to the UK and their existence will help keep your local high street alive.