UK Bingo Halls Celebrate Tax Cut
Bingo halls in the UK are celebrating after the Chancellor, George Osborne, cut the bingo duty rate to 10% in this year’s budget. Osborne cut the rate after a campaign by MPs and others convinced him that the industry was in real trouble and something needed to be done in order to save bingo halls and “protect jobs and protect communities”.
However, it wasn’t good news for fixed odds betting terminals; Osborne said that the machines have “proliferated” in the last decade and raised the duty on the machines to 25%.
The last three decades have seen the number of bingo halls drop by three-quarters. The Bingo Association has blamed high tax rate for hall closures and the loss of around 2,000 jobs.
The Rank Group, which runs 97 Mecca bingo halls, has said that the tax cut will enable it to build three new bingo venues and save others from closure.
The chief executive, Ian Burke, said that the announcement “is an important boost for Britain’s bingo clubs, which provide a range of social and economic benefits for the communities they serve.”