GamblingDrive

Welcome! GamblingDrive is all about gambling – how it gets out of hand and how it can impact on people’s home and work life.

Gambling is a human habit that can like smoking and alcohol have severe consequences on not only your own life but your family, work  and social life.

Gambling becomes additive and the more we get hooked the worse it becomes.

Gambling is similar to smoking, drugs or alcohol but not quite the same, as gamblers can become winners – there are many gamblers who have been lucky enough to keep winning and winning. Also, today tobacco and Alcohol companies are restricted with their marketing whereas gambling organisations are not.

Have you ever thought – why do they have a rollover and the jackpot is a crazy sum such as £50 million? You might be a logical thinker and think hang on why not have 50 x £1 million winners instead? Surely more winners encourage more people to gamble.

I am afraid that’s not what happens – when a rollover occurs the sum is higher which encourages people to buy more tickets because the reward is bigger. Often gamblers are people that don’t have more than a week’s money in savings.

In the UK the average family do not have more than a month’s savings for emergencies in their bank. Personal indebtedness is at its highest levels in the UK and now we have this instant coffee culture of wanting to fix something with a magic pill – look at physical health. We don’t want to kill ourselves down the gym going through the pain barrier when we can cut down food intake and take pills to suppress our appetite or pills that burn fat.

Mental health’s magic pill is to take antidepressants that make you forget temporarily, but this does not fix the problem.

Gambling’s magic pill is to keep gambling and try to gamble your way out of debt; this next bet will be it, I can feel it. Surely my luck has to change sometime!!

Gambling Facts

£ 0.1
billion

is the total gambling market in the UK 

£ 1
billion

was spent on internet gambling in the UK in 2019

£ 500
betting shops

in Great Britain in September 2019  – down 9.6% from March 2019 

1000
people

were employed in the gambling industry in September 2019 

These statistics are all from the Gambling Commission

THe Gambling Market

Let’s take a look at the size of the market to prove that gambling does not pay;
Total gambling market in the UK is £14.4 bn
Internet based gambling is worth £5.3 bn
Slots machines we spend £2.1 bn
We spend on the national lottery £1.5 bn
We spend on local society lottery £332 m
We spend visiting casinos £1.1 bn
There are over 102,782 people employed in the UK in gambling
Now let’s take a look at some of the gambling hard facts which are staggering
46% of Brits have gambled in some way in the last 4 weeks [Statistics]
Before March this year 800,000 UK residents gambled using their credit card
There are estimated to be 24 million gamblers in the UK in 2020
The total UK debt on credit cards is £72 billion the average interest rate in a credit card is 20.77%

Who gambles?

A gaming machine generates an average of £52,887 a year, according to the figures, about twice the national average wage. KPMG survey for ABB
Over half (56%) of online gamblers were registered online with more than one account, and 20% of those aged 18-24 had more than five online accounts.
51% of men gamble in any comparison to women 43%
Typically, the biggest gamblers are 35-54 with 53% having gambled in the past four weeks
7% of gamblers said they did so as a way to “earn money to get by day-to-day

Myths and Fantasy

The gambling industry is based on psychology, statistics and technology. The industry employs the best marketeers to persuade you to spend and they have very powerful big data systems that measure every angle possible to ensure you lose the majority of your money. The deploy the best developers to ensure you are teased to win and not lose every time. The software is designed to lull you into gambling more and more and then lose it all. They design the systems to not totally empty your bank but encourage you with small wins and to keep you gambling thinking the next bet will be a big win when I reality it’s like the lottery and your chances of winning are minuscule.

35.3% of sports betters consider they are profitable with younger betters 58.5% believing they were more profitable.

It’s not unusual for people to think they are profitable bettors when in fact they are not; psychologically you remember your wins more than you remember your losses. However, it’s the sheer number of people that think they are profitable — a massively unrealistic quantity — that no doubt spurs bookmakers and casinos, and broadcasters and the media as a by-product, to push gambling adverts in the faces of spectators anywhere they turn.
According to research though only 7.8% have ever been restricted or banned by a bookmaker,
Beating Betting said; As a site with years of experience in the industry, we can assure you that almost all profitable bettors (long-term) are banned or restricted in terms of stakes and access to promotions. Large bookmakers like Skybet claim to have only restricted 2-3% of their customer base — nowhere near this 35.3% supposed ‘winner’ percentage.

A smart sophisticated industry

We mentioned that gambling is addictive like alcohol and smoking. The latter industries have been contained with promotions most people really know that smoking and excessive drinking is bad for you. Whereas the gambling industry does have the odd winners and we are living a world now whereby people want to get rich quick solutions.

The reality is that nearly 10% of the UK society are addicted to gambling to the point that it impacts on their financial health. We know that this vicious circle soon impacts on mental health and physical health.

Many people who don’t understand will say well just stop its simple the facts are there that you cannot win the bookmakers. But they say that about smoking, people know smoking can kill you but yet 17% of the UK population do it. By 2026 we also know 67% of the UK population will be classified as obese which in the longer-term increases risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease and longevity of life but yet we still get fatter and cannot resist food.

Let’s see those people that tried to turn it around

Nick Phillips lost £250,000

In this article on Wales Online Nick explains how his gambling addiction cost him his home and drove him to attempt suicide twice. 

He started playing fruit machines in his snooker club 25 years ago and then spent his Saturdays in the bookies, socialising with friends and betting on horse racing and football.

You can read the full article here

Reddit have a thread on gambling problems, showing how it becomes like an adrenaline rush and takes over people lives.

A US post on GamCare describes how a son discovered that his mother was addicted to gambling; she had been for seven years and he just didn’t know. Can you imagine how he felt when he eventually did find out, and also that she had been taking some of his money to gamble? It caused enormous self doubt and trust issues.

Justyn Rees Larcombe Interview

This is a Ted talk from Tunbridge Wells explaining his life and how he lost almost £1 million.  It is 16 minutes long.

He also did an interview on ITV on Good Morning Britain in 2017.

The key message is – if you even think you have a problem – you MUST talk to someone about it. 

Caan Berry has done a video showing how you can stop problem gambling behaviour.

This video lasts about 19 minutes but has some good points you can note if you think there’s a problem.

Does UK Sport have a gambling problem?

Beating Betting have an interesting infographic which was complied and published in September 2018.

How to stop gambling

This short video shows the six stages of change that you need to go through to stop gambling.

"True luck consists not in holding the best of the cards at the table; luckiest is he who knows just when to rise and go home."
john milton hay
John Milton Hay
U.S. Secretary of State

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See what other things can help

More information

GamCare offer support through a free phone line, online chat or face to face help. They also have a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) online treatment course called GameChange. 

GAMSTOP let you put controls in place which restrict your ability to gamble. They prevent you using gambling websites and apps run by UK licensed companies – for as long as you like.

If your partner has a gambling problem then this article from StepChange the debt charity on  the Money Advice Service sets out some ideas on what you can do.

LIke AA, Gamblers Anonymous is the support group where you chat to other compulsive gamblers and join up.

The Gambling Commission list all the areas where you can get support.

Citizens Advice offer help and also support in dealing with the financial implications

Counselling Directory have information on what constitutes compulsive gambling

PsychGuides is a US based site dealing with addictions and they have a section on gambling.

Download Gambling Commission annual report on gambling participation in 2019: behaviour, awareness and attitudes in PDF

Download the Gambling Commission report on statistics

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