Clydebank’s MP Martin Docherty-Hughes has welcomed the UK Government’s climbdown on fixed odds betting terminals.

After last week’s announcement that the £2 cap on maximum stake will be brought forward from October 2019 to April, the UK government has accepted an amendment by the SNP to the Finance Bill, which inserts a new clause requiring a review of the public health effects of these gambling terminals.

Mr Docherty-Hughes said: “It’s welcome that the UK government has finally agreed to take action to tackle the harm caused by fixed odds betting terminals.

“FOBTs destroy lives. In West Dunbartonshire alone an estimated £3.9 million per year is being lost by local residents using these machines.

“The SNP has long campaigned for a more responsible maximum stake of £2 on FOBTs, which evidence shows will particularly benefit people on low incomes in deprived areas.

“It’s a step in the right direction and the UK government must now undertake a full review of the impact of FOBTs on public health to help address gambling related harm in our communities.

“The welfare of individuals and their families must take priority over the profits of bookmakers.”