Bath and North East Somerset Council’s casino licensing committee have approved three companies to progress to the full licence proposal stage for a ‘small’ casino. The fourth company that submitted an initial application, the Great Eastern Quays Casino consortium, was not considered as it had made no representations. The three firms that will now proceed with their licence bids are: Apollo Leisure, Gala and Rank’s Grosvenor Casinos. The first two have projects for the same site in Bath’s Cattle Market in Walcot Street while Grosvenor’s project is in Manvers Strret.
Objections from members of the public that a casino in Bath would bring more crime and disorder to the area were refuted by solicitors for the applicants. Apollo Leisure MD Mike Nutall said that a casino would bring more traffic and footfall but that “From our experience casinos do not create crime and disorder.” That view was supported by Councillor Gerry Curran, Chairman of the sub-committee. He stated, “Rather, the further supervision and monitoring brought by the casino is likely to assist in the prevention of crime and disorder.”
The Cattle Market location seems to have more support from local Bath residents than Manvers Street, which is close to a Church. The Grosvenor project for the Manvers Street car park would include a hotel and shops. The Cattle Market car park site would include apartments and concert/conference venue under the Gala scheme and hotel, restaurants and shops in the Apollo project. The second stage in the casino licensing process, the submission of the plans, is expected to commence in July. (E-06.08.11)
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