A tough week for gambling addicts

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“I’ve seen people €2,000 to €3,000 up on any given day during Cheltenham and they end up walking out with nothing,” so says Michael* Picture: posed by model

A tough week for gambling addicts

CAR windows smashed in temper, wild-eyed men on the edge of a big pay-out pacing the floor, and paranoid gamblers screaming in your face over a late price — it’s tough working in a betting shop during Cheltenham.

Murphy's Chipper Cork Murphy's Chipper Cork

Irish people just love the Cheltenham Festival, which gets underway tomorrow and runs until March 17. We spent more than €22m at the horse racing festival on 2017 and accounted for 30% of total punters at the event. At home, we gambled over €100million on bets in bookies’ shops and online.

It’s the one time of year many people break out a fiver, pick a horse they like the name of, or a jockey they’ve heard of, and have a flutter. It’s just a bit of fun; offices, factories and other workplaces are a-buzz with tips and talk of the winners and losers.

Unfortunately, for problem gamblers — either in active addiction or recovery — this time of year is an absolute nightmare as it’s everywhere. It is practically impossible to listen to any radio station, read a newspaper, or watch the TV without hearing talk of gambling at this time of year. Outside of St Stephen’s Day (the busiest day of the year) Cheltenham is top priority and bookies will do anything to get you in the door

Source Evening Echo