Council committee turns down application for gaming arcade

Cllr Alexander Redpath
Cllr Alexander Redpath

The council’s Planning Committee has turned down an application for a new gaming arcade in Lisburn city centre.

At their meeting on Monday, September 4, members were asked to rule on an application for change of use of premises at 25 Antrim Street from a restaurant to an amusement/gaming arcade.

Despite planners recommending approval of the application, councillors voted 8-2 to refuse it.

Local Councillor Alexander Redpath, who spoke against the application at the meeting, welcomed the committee’s decision.

The UUP man said he had been contacted by a number of constituents who were concerned about the possible opening of a “betting arcade” in the area.

“People’s concerns included the prominent site of the arcade on an arterial route in the city, especially with the number of school children passing it on a daily basis. Concerns were also raised about the impact gambling can have on the most vulnerable in society,” he explained.

“The Planning Committee can only consider planning grounds in its decisions, so accordingly my submissions were purely on the basis of planning policy,” he continued. “This site is in the city’s primary retail core, and as a result a departure from retail use has to meet strict planning conditions.

“I am grateful that the committee voted to refuse the application.”