UK casinos forced to delay reopening until Aug. 15 “at the earliest”

UK casinos are crying foul after the government delayed their planned post-pandemic reopening, while Scotland’s casinos are wondering if their launch timeline will face similar delays.

On Friday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that the plan to reopen casinos on Saturday, August 1 would be postponed by “at least” two weeks as the country attempts to slow the worrying rise in COVID-19 infection rates over the past month.

The delay affects not just casinos but also bowling alleys, skating rinks, wedding receptions and other “higher-risk settings.” A raft of other restrictions on social gatherings were imposed, which Johnson said were needed to “avoid a return to full national lockdown.”

Johnson’s new lockdown orders will scupper the plan to allow up to 5,000 racing punters back in the stands for this Saturday’s Glorious Goodwood meet. The setback calls into question the plan for a full resumption of bums-in-seats at sports and racing events by October 1.