§ Mr. Clay
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will introduce legislation to amend the Gaming Act 1968 and the Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976 to allow local authorities more discretion in the granting of permits for amusement centres.
§ Mr. Hurd
Local authorities have an unfettered discretion — which must, however, be exercised reasonably — over whether to grant or refuse such a permit. Any change in the law could be justified only if adequate grounds could be established. We are aware of the concern of some local authorities, and others, about the proliferation of amusement arcades and we are holding consultations before deciding whether there is a need for amending legislation.