Gambling Prevalence: No surprises

15/02/2011

The Gambling Prevalence Survey was published today and can be downloaded here (British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2010). It offers the industry no shocks or surprises. Around three-quarters of British adults gamble every week, mostly on the National Lottery. If you have a problem with gambling, you are most likely to be young, male, black and a smoker.

Football pools have lost popularity among Britons down 5% in the last decade. Online gambling has only increased by 1% in the UK in the last 3 years. There were some small but significant decreases in the popularity of slot machines (13% in 2010, 14% in 2007 and 1999).

The following points were also made:

  • Participation in gambling has increased in the UK to 35.5 million people – a 10% increase since 2007
  • Fewer than 1 in 100 of the adult population has a problem with their gambling
  • That 78% of people who gamble do so because it is fun
  • The Survey reaffirms that gambling is an increasingly mainstream leisure activity in the UK

However, the Survey also shows that there has been an increase in problem gambling. Whilst any rise in the level of problem gambling is a cause for concern, Business in Sport and Leisure (BISL) notes that this rise is only at the margins of statistical significance. More detailed analysis is required to understand this fully.
Dominic Harrison, CEO of BISL said, “The survey shows that gambling remains a fun activity for the vast majority of adults in the UK.  However any level of problem gambling is a challenge which needs to be tackled.  BISL is committed to continuing its work with its member companies, Government, the Gambling Commission, GamCare, GREaT, the Responsible Gambling Strategy Board and the academic community to help address and deal with problem gambling.”

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