It has been revealed that John Whittingdale and Philip Davies did not declare a night out courtesy of the Lap Dancing Association before their select committee opposed a crackdown against the spread of lap dancing clubs.
Whilst other members of the committee saw little value in the visit, Whittingdale and Davies did not pass up the opportunity for a lads’ night out to the lap dancing club “For Your Eyes Only” before heading to another club for dinner.
It’s not the first time Whittingdale and Davies have risked the perks of the job clouding their judgement. In 2012, Whittingdale chaired a select committee inquiry into the 2005 Gambling Act. Both Whittingdale and Davies, who was also part of the committee, took advantage of trips to Macao and Australia to look at casinos, but only found time to visit one betting shop in Britain on a visit chaperoned by the bookmakers.
Before the inquiry began, Davies was taken to the races by Ladbrokes – but failed to declare this before quizzing the Ladbrokes CEO. During the course of the inquiry, the Gambling Commission failed to disclose independent research from Harvard University showing that Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) are the most addictive form of gambling.
This might explain why one of the committee’s key recommendations was to allow more than four FOBTs per betting shop – machines where it is possible to bet up to £100 every 20 seconds. The Coalition government rejected this recommendation, and Davies was forced to apologise for his misdemeanor.
Now Whittingdale is Culture Secretary and the triennial review of stakes and prizes is overdue, the question of what perks he is enjoying courtesy of the bookmakers will surely start to be asked…
Content produced and sponsored by Stop the FOBTS