McArthur to step down from UKGC position

Neil McArthur is resigning from his position as Chief Executive of the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).

McArthur had worked for the country’s gambling regulator since 2006, and had led the Commission as Chief Executive since 2018. 

His resignation is with immediate effect, and the UKGC will commence its search for a replacement in the near future. 

“I am proud of everything the Gambling Commission has achieved” 

When handing in his resignation, McArthur said: “I am proud of everything the Gambling Commission has achieved during my 15 years with the organisation. We have taken significant steps forward to make gambling fairer and safer, and I know that I leave the organisation in a strong position to meet its future challenges.

“With a review of the Gambling Act under way, now feels the right time to step away and allow a new chief executive to lead the commission on the next stage in its journey.”

A critical time for the UKGC 

McArthur’s resignation comes at a busy period for the UKGC. Last week, the Commission was accused of regulation-related failures after Football Index entered administration. However, the Chief Executive’s departure is not believed to be linked. 

The 2005 Gambling Act is also under review by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). Numerous talking points are related to the legislation, including affordability checks and whether or not the legislation is in-line with current market realities. 

The end of a long tenure 

Prior to becoming Chief Executive in February 2018, McArthur was Chief Counsel and Executive Director for the UKGC. He originally took over to cover following the departure of Sarah Harrison, but was appointed permanently two months later. 

Bill Moyes, Chairman of the Commission, will appoint an interim Chief Executive. Once he leaves his position later in 2021, his replacement will seek a permanent replacement. 

For now, Sarah Gardner – Deputy Chief Executive – has temporarily taken McArthur’s responsibilities, alongside Chief Operating Officer Sally Jones. 

Commenting on McArthur’s departure, Chairman Moyes said: “On behalf of the board, I would like to thank Neil for his many years of commitment and service to the Gambling Commission. A lot has been achieved during his time here and Neil can rightly feel proud of the organisation’s progress during his tenure as chief executive.”

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