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Gambling Most Prevalent Among Scots, New Survey Finds

on Saturday, 8 September 2018
Gambling Addiction

A new study has discovered that Scottish people are far more likely to gamble than anyone else throughout the UK.

According to the Gambling Commission’s latest survey, 66% of adults in Scotland spent money on gambling activities in 2016 compared to 56% of people in England and just 55% in Wales.

The survey, which drew data from research carried out in 2016, also found that the National Lottery was the most popular form of gambling as over half of all Scots bought a ticket at one point during the year. Meanwhile, 23% bought scratchcards at least once throughout 2016.

Around 10% of the survey’s respondents also revealed that they had indulged in online gambling, while another 11% had confessed to betting on a horse race. A further 5% revealed they had bet on a football match in a betting shop.

The Gambling Commission’s Health survey also revealed that, across the UK, only 57% of adults had gambled within the past year, down 6% from the Commission’s 2015 study. In addition, the survey’s results stated that only 1.2% of gamblers were “problem gamblers”, a rate consistent with previous reports from 2012 and 2015.

Drinking alcohol was shown to have an effect on gambling participation. According to the survey, gambling participation was lowest among those that didn’t drink at 36% but increased to 59% for anyone who had drunk 14 units of alcohol per week. Those who drunk over 14 units of alcohol per week recorded the highest gambling participation at 69%.

Problem Gambling in Great Britain

In a statement, Tim Miller, the Executive Director of the Gambling Commission, said: “The health survey, along with all of our evidence and data, indicates that the problem gambling rate in Great Britain is stable.

“However, we want to see a sustained and significant reduction in the levels of problem gambling and will continue to drive the industry to build momentum towards this goal. Understanding the level of problem gambling is an important part of making gambling safer, but what this data won’t show is the extent of the harm someone may be experiencing, or the wider impact upon their families and their communities.”

He added: “That is why, together with our expert advisers the Responsible Gambling Strategy Board, we recently published a ground-breaking approach to understanding the full range of harms gambling can have on society.”

If you feel you or anyone else may be suffering from a gambling addiction, visit our support page for information and helplines.