In the United Kingdom and prominent high street bookmaker GVC Holdings has announced the formulation of a ‘comprehensive plan’ that it believes will soon allow its shops to begin emerging from their coronavirus-related lockdowns.

The London-listed firm is responsible for approximately 3,500 such venues nationwide via its 2018 acquisition of Ladbrokes Coral Group and it used an official Tuesday filing to state that the strategy has been designed according to guidelines set out by the government and World Health Organization (WHO) ‘to ensure the health and well-being of all colleagues and customers’.

Initial introduction:

GVC Holdings declared that its plan could begin being implemented at the 2,450 properties it runs across England and the Channel Islands from Monday following the implementation of revised ‘social distancing and safety procedures’ alongside the installation of new protective equipment. The operator revealed that its venues in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are subsequently expected to follow suit once it has received ‘further guidance’ from these territory’s own devolved administrations.

Substantial shuttering:

Betting shops and casinos across the United Kingdom were ordered to close from March 20 as the number of people afflicted with the potentially-lethal coronavirus strain surpassed 4,000. Just over eleven weeks later and the government of Prime Minister Boris Johnson is keen to begin allowing these venues to re-open even though the nation’s daily infection rate for the highly-contagious ailment remains around 2,000.

Multiple measures:

Kenneth Alexander (pictured), Chief Executive Officer for GVC, used the filing to pronounce that his firm’s plan will see the provision of ‘tools to support social distancing’ as well as the installation of protective equipment such as ‘sneeze screens’ around betting stations and gaming machines. He explained that re-opening shops are to moreover feature floor markings and signage so as to supply sportsbetting punters with ‘direction on social distancing’ and have their equipment including all screens subjected to regular cleaning.

Read a statement from Alexander…

“We are very pleased to be re-opening our shops in England as the United Kingdom begins the first steps in returning to some form of normality. Ever since the lockdown was introduced, we have been working tirelessly on a plan that will deliver the safest possible environment for both our customers and our people. I am confident we have achieved that and look forward to welcoming our customers back in the near future.”