Rhyl-based AGC operator Webbers Leisure has submitted a proposal to Cheshire West and Chester Council to revitalise a vacant bookmaker in Chester city centre as a new gaming centre.
The plans apply to a former William Hill on the city’s Frodsham Street, and if successful, would deliver Webbers a fourth UK site, alongside its existing AGCs in Rhyl, Caernarfon and Manchester.
The Chester Standard takes up the story: “The proposed adult gaming centre, often referred to as arcades, would be open from 9am until 10pm, Monday to Saturday, and from 10am until 8pm on Sundays and Bank Holidays.”
“One objection has been received by Cheshire West and Chester Council in relation to the application.”
The objection, raised by chartered surveyors Elias Topping, states the presence of a similar premises nearby “will dilute the retail offer” – a somewhat odd response from a business sector that probably knows more about the retail void on Wales’ high streets than anyone. Roger Etchells – acting on behalf of Webbers – was clear in his view that stated there is “no conflict” with planning policy.
“The replication/duplication of uses is the essence of shopping centres – especially larger ones like Chester where choice and competition enhance its vitality and viability.”
A representation made in favour of the application stated the AGC will “provide healthy competition” and “help to regenerate the area.”