Members of the British Amusement Catering Trade Association (Bacta) announced that it will be banning players under 18 years of age from playing Category D cash fruit machines in seaside arcades and family entertainment venues.
The proposal, which was approved by members of the Bacta Division 1 will be ratified at the annual general meeting scheduled on November 26. It will come into effect starting from March 1 next year.
According to Bacta, family groups can still play in close proximity without segregation and that all games will remain available for adults to play inside all member venues.
The new age restriction, according to Bacta president James Miller, would send a message to customers reassuring them that family seaside amusement arcades are safe for all families.
“Our members are all about providing fun and entertainment to the whole family as part of their annual holiday or day trip to the seaside,” Miller explained.
“We take social responsibility extremely seriously and although Category D cash payout fruit machines operate at a very low stake and prize limits which are predominantly played by adults for fun and nostalgia, we wanted to do our utmost and limit any potential risks to gambling harm,” he added.
John White, Bacta chief executive, also commented, saying:
“Category D fruit machines have been long considered as part of the entertainment offer associated with seaside holidays and a trip to the arcade. Regulators in the past have therefore not imposed an age restriction on them. However, our new members understand that perceptions change and we want to ensure that we do everything possible to protect players.”