No extension of gambling areas

DUNDALK Town Council will not change its designated areas for gambling outlets in the town.

DUNDALK Town Council will not change its designated areas for gambling outlets in the town.

Any applications to operate a gaming area would require a redrawing of the areas in the town that come under the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956.

The council has voted not to adopt part three of the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956 in respect of the Racecourse Road area.

In other words, Dundalk Sports Bingo, formerly Dundalk Sports Bowl, will not be able to operate gaming machines from its premises.

Many councillors were concerned about concerned about a planning application by the Dundalk Sports Bowl to change its former bowling alley into a gaming and amusement area.

Cllr Jim Ryan said the council would have no control over the number of machines that would operate from such a venue.

But Cllr Sean Bellew said such venues can be safely monitored under the legislation and the licence has to be renewed annually.

Cllr Maria Doyle said this was a different situation to that faced by the council when it previously adopted the Act back in 1984.

Online gambling was now a popular pastime so the whole meaning of where and when people can gamble has changed.

But Cllr Ryan said the town has “enough one-armed bandits”. He also asked if Dundalk Sports Bingo could still operate bingo if the council refused to sanction the gaming machines.

The Town Clerk said the act did not define that.

Cllr Eamon O’Boyle said

Town Clerk Frank Pentony said submissions had not been required in this case, nevertheless the council had received 115 of them.

The developers behind the new complex planned for the outskirts of Dundalk have claimed it will create, upwards of 50 full and part time jobs for the area, and provide a quality attraction to locals and tourists alike.

They said the complex at the Dundalk Sportsbowl site on the Racecourse Road in Dundalk, will attract visitors from as far as Belfast, Newry, North Dublin and Drogheda, and the developers insist that the initiative will be a much needed boost to the local economy and job creation.

The Sports Bingo will operate the Bingo on behalf of two worthy Charities.

Dundalk Sportsbowl Ltd, are the company behind the Sportsbowl Complex, and say they expect to bring thousands of visitors to the area each week.