Flutter is the latest operator to announce it will be reopening its betting shops in parts of the UK.
Flutter Entertainment has announced it will reopen all of its Paddy Power retail betting shops in England and 150 locations in the Republic of Ireland from 15 June as lockdown restrictions are eased.
In March, all UK betting shops, bingo halls and casinos closed their doors in line with government measures to halt the spread of the coronavirus. The Irish government also ordered the closure of non-essential businesses, including betting shops, in March.
The UK and Irish governments are set to ease their lockdown restrictions next week allowing non-essential retail businesses to reopen on 15 June. However, for the time being in the UK, this will only apply to England as Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have yet to ease their lockdown restrictions.
Flutter said it would reopen its shops in the devolved nations as their lockdown restrictions are eased. Although Paddy Power will resume trading next week, the operator will only open 150 of its retail branches in Ireland.
Safe reopening measures
While all Paddy Power shops will follow the latest government guidelines and advice on social distancing, Flutter said it will introduce several other initiatives to keep customers and staff safe.
Floor markings will be placed around shops to help customers queue safely while social distancing. On top of this, a certain number of customers will be allowed in shops at any one time.
Customers will be encouraged to use hand sanitiser when entering a Paddy Power shop, before and after using a machine and again when they leave the shop. Bettors will also be asked to take their pen with them or throw it away after writing out a bet on a slip. Customers will also be encouraged to use contactless payment where possible.
Staff will also request customers to limit the time they spend in shops so that other customers can enter. Customers will also be asked to leave the shop and go home if they feel unwell at any time.
The operator said: “We’re asking everyone to do your bit to help ensure that we, you and the rest of the world starts getting back to normal as quickly – and safely – as possible.”
More betting shops to reopen next week
Yesterday (9 June), GVC Holdings announced plans to reopen 2,445 of its Ladbrokes and Coral betting shops in England from 15 June.
According to GVC’s announcement, property maintenance checks will be carried out each day before shops open such as the cleaning of screens, gaming machines and betting stations.
GVC also announced it will introduce several measures to help support social distancing. This includes the installation of glass barriers at cashier points, customer signage and floor markings. Staff members will also receive training on the new safety measures.