HC Deb 25 April 1975 vol 890 cc411-3W
Mr. Alison

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if, in respect of the Gaming Board of Great Britain, he will specify in detail the present range of duties and functions performed by the board and the prescribed manpower establishment for their discharge, the actual number of members and employees who perform those duties and functions at present, and the average number of hours per employee per week worked in any recent convenient time period in the course of discharging those duties and functions, including overtime shown separately.

Dr. Summerskill

The Gaming Board for Great Britain was established under Section 10 of the Gaming Act 1968 with a general duty to keep under review the extent and character of gaming in Great Britain: and, in particular,

  1. (a) To investigate the trustworthiness of all applicants for licences for commercial gaming with a view to issuing certificates of consent, without which the applications may not be considered by the justices, and similarly to approve gaming managers, supervisors and inspectors, all gaming operatives in of casino gaming clubs and selected classes of operative in bingo clubs, and suppliers of gaming and amusement machines. The board also has powers to revoke certificates in accordance with the provisions of the Act.
  2. (b) To advise the Secretary of State on all regulations to be made under the Act.
  3. (c) To advise licensing authorities on the public demand for commercial gaming facilities, the suitability of premises to be used by licensed clubs, and restrictions to be attached to licences.
  4. (d) If it so wishes, to appear before the justices to oppose applications for the grant or renewal of licences, or to move for the cancellation of licences or certificates of registration. The board is empowered to appeal to the Crown court against decisions of the justices.
  5. (e) Through its inspectors to supervise clubs licensed under Part II of the Act; and to enforce the gaming laws in co-operation with the police.
  6. (f) To make an annual report to the Secretary of State in respect of the performance of its functions.

Under the Pool Competitions Act 1971 the board considers applications from certain registered pool promoters for the grant or renewal of licences under the Act, enabling them to hold competitions for prizes. The Act gives the board wide discretion to grant, refuse or revoke licences, and to attach to licences conditions designed to protect the interests of the charities or sporting bodies which benefit from the competitions and to secure a fair deal and full information for competitors. It exercises a continuing supervision of the competitions promoted under its licences.

The prescribed manpower establishment for the discharge of these duties and functions, apart from board members, whose number is not prescribed, is 40 of the administration group and 31 of the board's inspectorate. The actual number of board members at present is four, and of staff 40 administration group and 30 inspectorate.

I am informed that the average number of hours per staff member per week worked during the calender year 1974 was, for the administration group, 41, and for the inspectorate 45. The latter figure includes an average of three hours per week overtime.