Chongie Entertainment has submitted an application to Waltham Forest Council in north east London to convert a former homestore in the borough into a new AGC.
The application seeks to repurpose the former Bright Sparks shop in Leyton as Little Vegas, and reflects a wider shift away from retail along the area’s High Road.
“The unit at the current time is contributing nothing to the vitality and viability of the [area] and indeed rather can be said to be detracting from it,” states the application. “It is highly likely (given Covid’s impact) that a shift towards leisure and service provision will need to happen to ensure the vitality and viability of centres that have traditionally been retail-dominant.”
“The night-time use would be low key, with few customers, and will offer a facility for night workers and shift workers, generating employment and natural surveillance.”
Noting that local residents had launched a petition to oppose the application, Chongie added that the venue will offer the area an alternative to the High Road’s existing betting offices.
“Licensed betting offices generally adopt a less inviting and supportive space for customers who can place a bet or play machines,” added the application.
“Adult gaming centres have historically played an important community role with staff circulating the shop floor, speaking to, helping and getting to know customers.”