Plans for new Hastings 24-hour slot machine arcade

A developer has put forward plans to open a new 24-hour slot machine arcade in Hastings town centre. 

Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 1:08 pm

In an application to Hastings Borough Council, high street gambling chain Merkur Slots is seeking planning permission to open an adult gaming centre (ACG) in place of a former pawnbrokers in Queens Road.

According to the applicant (which also operates the Cashino chain), the unit has been vacant since October 2019, when Cash Generator, the previous tenant, went into liquidation. The applicant says no alternative tenants have come forward since.

In a planning statement, a spokesman for the applicant said: “AGCs typically operate 24-hours and that is proposed for the new AGC at the application site. 

“A noise assessment has been prepared which assesses potential impacts on noise sensitive properties, principally the flats above, concluding that there will be no significant adverse impacts provided the rectification works to the property outlined in the assessment are implemented. 

“Whilst longer hours of operation are sought, it is also important to consider that Cashino noise levels are generally very low and impacts on disturbance to surrounding residences are effectively minimised and mitigated.”

The spokesman added: “The proposal involves the bringing-back of a vacant unit into a beneficial use which will lead to environmental improvements

to the frontage, high footfall, linked trips, new jobs and will assist in diversifying the centre’s offer.

“It is therefore respectfully requested that the application is approved without delay.”

According to the applicant, the centre would only be open to those over the age of 18 and would create seven jobs.

The applicant also says it would not have any fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) on site – a controversial form of betting machines, which have had £2 limits on stakes since 2019. None of the other machines would have stakes above £2 either.

If approved, the applicant would also need to secure an adult gaming centre licence before it can operate on the site. No licensing application appears to have been submitted at time of publication however. 

For further information on the planning application, see reference HS/FA/21/00443 on the Hastings Borough Council website.