asked Her Majesty's Government:What control there is in planning law or otherwise over the establishment of computer games arcades, such as the 24,000 square foot SEGA arcade recently opened in Bournemouth and the 10 further ones reported due to open in Britain this year.
Planning permission is required for the establishment of all new amusement centres. The main considerations in determining planning applications are the type of centre proposed; impact on neighbours (including noise and general disturbance); vehicular and pedestrian movements; location and appearance. The Government's policy on amusement centres is set out in Annex C to Planning Policy Guidance Note 6 Town Centres and Retail Developments, a copy of which has been placed in the Library. In addition to planning controls, premises with amusement-with-prizes machines require a permit from a local authority under the Gaming Act 1968 before they can operate.