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New research shows that people in North West are more likely to be affected by someone else’s gambling

12th Oct 2023 Jude Obi

New research shows that people in North West are more likely to be affected by someone else’s gambling

GambleAware releases new interactive data maps of Great Britain, outlining gambling harms at both a local authority and parliamentary constituency level

  • The North West has a higher proportion of people affected by another person’s gambling (8%) than the British average (7%), ranking the worst out of 11 regions.
  • The North West also has less demand for support, advice or treatment among people experiencing ‘problem gambling’, at only 57% compared to the British average of 65%. 
  • The interactive maps build on GambleAware’s regional-first approach to tackling gambling harms.

GambleAware, the leading charity in Great Britain commissioning gambling harm prevention and treatment services, has today released updated maps, showing gambling harms at both a local authority and parliamentary constituency level, including in the North West of England.

The maps make it possible to see which areas in Great Britain have higher or lower levels of gambling harm, as well as which areas have higher or lower usage or demand for treatment and support among those who gamble.

Data underpinning the maps1 also reveals that the North West has a higher proportion of ‘affected others’ (8%) than the average across Great Britain (7%), ranking the worst out of 11 regions. An affected other is anyone who is negatively affected by someone else’s gambling. This includes any impacts on their finances, their relationship, or their mental or physical health. 

The data also shows that 61% of adults in the North West – equivalent to over 3.6 million people – engaged in any form of gambling in 2022. While this is slightly higher than the national average of 60%, there was lower demand for support amongst people who gamble. Across the North West only 57% of those experiencing problem gambling (defined as a PGSI score of 8 or above) reported that they wanted support, advice or treatment services, compared to 65% across Great Britain as a whole.

The maps build on GambleAware’s regional-first approach to tackling gambling harms, which aims to ensure that people can find support for gambling harms in their local communities. This includes increased campaign activity across the country, engagement with local authorities and working to identify what needs to be done in different regions such as the North West to ensure access to the right treatment and support.

Earlier this year, GambleAware developed a comprehensive network of treatment and support providers across Great Britain, including Beacon Counselling Trust in the North West, during a robust process that built on extensive engagement. The National Gambling Support Network (NGSN) improves referral routes, ensuring individuals receive the right support at the right time.

Zoë Osmond, Chief Executive of GambleAware, said: “Gambling harms are a serious public health issue and can affect anyone, including many thousands of people across the North West – as well as those closest to them.

“As the leading gambling harms charity in Great Britain, we have published these maps to provide local areas with the evidence they need to address treatment and support needs in their communities.

“Broadening our reach, working with people at a local level and engaging with local authorities means we can further help those experiencing harm from gambling.”

Neil Platt, Clinical Director at Beacon Counselling Trust, said: “As a North West provider within the National Gambling Support Network we see firsthand the affects gambling can have on individuals and those around them across the region, and this insightful data helps confirm what we see every day.

“Gambling harms can affect anyone. This is why it is so important the treatment and support services available for people are as accessible, proactive and representative as possible, with Beacon providing both counselling sessions and practical and holistic support for those experiencing gambling harms and ‘affected others.’

“The design of the new National Gambling Support Network means those who are experiencing gambling harm can access specialist, tailored treatment or support, dependent on their needs, quickly and efficiently, wherever they are across Great Britain.”

Anyone concerned about their gambling, or that of a loved one, can search GambleAware for free, confidential advice, tools and support. The National Gambling Helpline is also available on 0808 8020 133 and operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 


Notes to Editors

1. Annual GB Treatment and Support Survey 2022

  • The maps highlight the level of harm across the different areas based on the widely used screening tool, the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI) as a visual. This helps to understand how many people are experiencing harm from gambling and who is at risk.
  • The maps were produced by PoliMapper, which creates data visualisations.  

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