The ARB was formed in 1999 when the Birmingham and Midland BPA disbanded and formed a new association. It then became a founder member of the Federation of Racecourse Bookmakers together with the NAB and RBA.
Our aim is to represent our members through the FRB and AGT in the best and fairest way possible.
Coronavirus - May 2020
The FRB have taken several steps to ensure our members’ concerns are drawn to the attention of the Government during the lockdown.
1. MPs have written directly to the Chancellor Rishi Sunak to highlight the particular needs of the on-course industry. We have stressed it is essential that support is given to us once racing returns, as we cannot earn a living if racing is conducted behind closed doors.
2. We have also been in touch with MPs who have the 59 racecourses in their constituency to ask for their support for the on-course industry. In doing so, we highlighted the differences between on and off course bookmaking to ensure that we are treated differently to bookmakers who have multiple offerings.
3. Via a Member of Parliament who is a member of a key Commons Select Committee, we have made contact with the Permanent Secretary at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (Sarah Healey). During a recent Committee hearing with the Permanent Secretary and the Chief Executive of the Gambling Commission, the specific question of support for on-course bookmakers was asked, and Ms Healey suggested the MP contacted her for a more detailed briefing meeting.
4. Next steps will be to review the response from Government to our lobbying once the Chancellor has replied. We will also be drafting written and oral parliamentary questions to keep the pressure up and make sure that Ministers and Civil Servants are aware of the impact of lockdown on FRB membership.
5. We are current working on a proposal to put to racecourses so that all parties are clear what procedures will need to be put in place in order to allow on-course bookmakers to return to work once racing opens to the public.