Lancashire Telegraph'Gambling machines took my dignity and my pride', says Blackburn man (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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'Gambling machines took my dignity and my pride', says Blackburn man

Lancashire Telegraph: Michael Waring Michael Waring

A GAMBLING addict has revealed how he squanders hundreds of pounds in benefits on virtual roulette machines.

Nearly every penny of Michael Waring’s benefits – a total of £845 a month – is lost at betting shops.

The 28-year-old said: “I’m in a constant cycle of spending my money and then twiddling my thumbs waiting for my next giro.”

Unshaven, gaunt and having worn the same clothes for a week, the addict’s life has almost been destroyed since he first gambled 12 years ago.

He said it was the casino game machines, or ‘fixed-odds betting terminals’ that tipped him over the edge.

Last year along, East Lancashire punters staked more than £270million on the machines – which have a maximum bet of £100.

“When the machines came out I didn’t even know what roulette was,” he said.

After three months playing them I was hooked,” he said. “I took my wages into the bookies. I was convinced I could win and put all my money into a machine.

“I lost. When I left, the fresh air hit me and my guts were wrenching.

“The next week I went in again.”

It wasn’t long before the healthy, gym-going window fitter lost everything – including his ‘trophy girlfriend’.

He left his job, stopped taking care of himself, became depressed and stole food when he was spent up.

He even sold his motocross bike, spending the proceeds at a casino the same night.

In an attempt to battle his demons, Mr Waring, moved from Blackburn to Morecambe to be closer to his mother.

“One morning last year I managed to abstain and decided to spend the day in Windermere, rent a boat and relax,” he said. “But I started to get the urge to gamble.”

After finding a bookmaker, he spent £130. “I texted my mum and said I wanted to kill myself and die,” he said.

Last Tuesday Mr Waring snapped and attacked a casino machine during a spree on which he again lost all his money after several trips to a cash machine.

“I punched the machine several times, threw it onto the floor and left,” he said.

Mr Waring confessed at a police station, but walked free after learning it hadn’t been reported.

“I have no dignity or pride left,” he said. “Those machines are the crack cocaine of gambling.”

Mr Waring surrendered his casino membership card to stop him gambling, but they aren’t used at bookmakers. “I really want to see them used,” he added.

A £500,000, 18-month-long study into gambling machines was launched by the Responsible Gambling Trust last month. The government will review the results.

Comments (12)

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4:28pm Mon 18 Feb 13

Davelyn says...

Stop paying him benefit money. I am a working tax payer. This is outrageous. This country is going from bad to worse for handing money out to those who won't work but can spend all there time and tax payers money gambling, drinking and taking drugs.
Stop paying him benefit money. I am a working tax payer. This is outrageous. This country is going from bad to worse for handing money out to those who won't work but can spend all there time and tax payers money gambling, drinking and taking drugs. Davelyn
  • Score: 6

5:13pm Mon 18 Feb 13

buckoff says...

£195 a week for not working? Its no wonder there queuing to get in this country. Think I ought to retire early and sign on. Gets me all the pensioners that have worked and paid into the system most for 50+yrs and they get half that.
£195 a week for not working? Its no wonder there queuing to get in this country. Think I ought to retire early and sign on. Gets me all the pensioners that have worked and paid into the system most for 50+yrs and they get half that. buckoff
  • Score: 6

5:25pm Mon 18 Feb 13

Pearl neclesse says...

I'm struggling to find any shred of sympathy for this chap!
An addict is an addict..and I couldn't give a stuff what form that addiction takes..providing it is paid for out of money earnt...not stolen from the "state" or individuals.
I'm struggling to find any shred of sympathy for this chap! An addict is an addict..and I couldn't give a stuff what form that addiction takes..providing it is paid for out of money earnt...not stolen from the "state" or individuals. Pearl neclesse
  • Score: 5

6:04pm Mon 18 Feb 13

sen c b l says...

This muck is taking the mick.
This muck is taking the mick. sen c b l
  • Score: 4

6:06pm Mon 18 Feb 13

Good call says...

Davelyn wrote:
Stop paying him benefit money. I am a working tax payer. This is outrageous. This country is going from bad to worse for handing money out to those who won't work but can spend all there time and tax payers money gambling, drinking and taking drugs.
Well down for paying tax which funds the murderous wars and unaccountable intelligence agencies.
[quote][p][bold]Davelyn[/bold] wrote: Stop paying him benefit money. I am a working tax payer. This is outrageous. This country is going from bad to worse for handing money out to those who won't work but can spend all there time and tax payers money gambling, drinking and taking drugs.[/p][/quote]Well down for paying tax which funds the murderous wars and unaccountable intelligence agencies. Good call
  • Score: 3

6:15pm Mon 18 Feb 13

woolywords says...

A £500,000, 18-month-long study into gambling machines was launched by the Responsible Gambling Trust last month but so far they've on won on 2 Bells Fruits and a single cherry.
A £500,000, 18-month-long study into gambling machines was launched by the Responsible Gambling Trust last month but so far they've on won on 2 Bells Fruits and a single cherry. woolywords
  • Score: 0

6:29pm Mon 18 Feb 13

liddle 'un says...

Anyone offering odds that he will shake his habit?
Anyone offering odds that he will shake his habit? liddle 'un
  • Score: -1

6:38pm Mon 18 Feb 13

Joey99 says...

Don't feel much sympathy for the man, but problem gambling does need tackling.
Don't feel much sympathy for the man, but problem gambling does need tackling. Joey99
  • Score: -2

9:09pm Mon 18 Feb 13

Black Car Guy. says...

Stop his benifits. Oh wait it is his human right to get it.
Stop his benifits. Oh wait it is his human right to get it. Black Car Guy.
  • Score: 4

10:28pm Mon 18 Feb 13

Good call says...

Black Car Guy. wrote:
Stop his benifits. Oh wait it is his human right to get it.
He's no different to the banksters who are steering this country (and many others) towards financial armageddon.
[quote][p][bold]Black Car Guy.[/bold] wrote: Stop his benifits. Oh wait it is his human right to get it.[/p][/quote]He's no different to the banksters who are steering this country (and many others) towards financial armageddon. Good call
  • Score: 0

7:47pm Tue 19 Feb 13

King Fabulous says...

Good call wrote:
Black Car Guy. wrote:
Stop his benifits. Oh wait it is his human right to get it.
He's no different to the banksters who are steering this country (and many others) towards financial armageddon.
He is completely different you twerp, Why should any hard working person subsidise this pathetic little scrote? This just shows that ALL benefits need to be made to a non-transfarable debit card.
[quote][p][bold]Good call[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Black Car Guy.[/bold] wrote: Stop his benifits. Oh wait it is his human right to get it.[/p][/quote]He's no different to the banksters who are steering this country (and many others) towards financial armageddon.[/p][/quote]He is completely different you twerp, Why should any hard working person subsidise this pathetic little scrote? This just shows that ALL benefits need to be made to a non-transfarable debit card. King Fabulous
  • Score: 2

6:40am Wed 20 Feb 13

jay1969 says...

I work 30hrs a week 4 £210, not the best job in the world but at least i have the pride to go out and do it, but reading this i think to myself whats the point in working when i could just start claiming like this lowlife.
Really makes my blood boil!!!.
I work 30hrs a week 4 £210, not the best job in the world but at least i have the pride to go out and do it, but reading this i think to myself whats the point in working when i could just start claiming like this lowlife. Really makes my blood boil!!!. jay1969
  • Score: 3

Comments are closed on this article.

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