Improvement Service website header

Tackling Payday Lending and Gambling Summit

Tackling Pay Day Lending and Gambling in Scottish Town Centres and Neighbourhoods


Ministerial conference and summit hosted by Derek MacKay, Minister for Local Government and Planning

23 April 2014, Trades Hall, Glasgow


The ‘Tackling Payday Lenders and Gambling in Scottish Town Centres’ summit was organised in partnership with the Scottish Government, COSLA and the Improvement Service.


The Minister had announced his commitment to host the summit following a debate in Scottish Parliament around the newly launched Town Centre Action Plan. The clustering and numbers of payday lenders and betting shops in Scotland raised cross party parliamentary concern as well as the personal and social impacts of using these services on individuals and communities.


The intention of the summit was to discuss a range of measures and to consider wider issues and to share good practice and ideas within the context of current legislation and activities. The event was attended by 120 delegates including representatives from local authorities, money advice and financial inclusion services, welfare organisations, credit unions and the private sector.


Consensus amongst those attending was that working together on a shared objective was the way forward. The Minister summarised this at the end of the summit:


  • Recognition of the amount of work and approaches already being taken by local authorities and in communities, and consider how government can help scale this in to sustainable services
  • Importance of working together and looking at integrated approaches, working across cabinet colleagues, local authorities and other key agencies
  • Support the new agreement between the Financial Conduct Authority, COSLA and SCOTSS
  • Detailed examination of how we use planning, licensing and other measures to improve outcomes
  • Develop policy guidance on  community empowerment and Town Centre Action Plan to engage and empower communities on how to develop vibrant high streets
  • Develop a coherent Scottish approach to responding to the forthcoming Financial Conduct Authority and Gambling Commission consultations
  • Ensure the summit report is circulated widely and that an action plan and delivery plan are developed


Following the event the Minister proposed to develop and launch an action plan to tackle issues related to payday lenders and gambling in Scottish town centres.


Watch video highlights from the day, hear summit participant’s views and download the presentations below. You can read the social media coverage at


Summit report

Download a detailed summit report including summaries from all presentations and workshops.


Summit interviews

Watch a summary of what delegates attending the day thought of the event and what action is needed to tackle some of the issues:


Summit key speeches


Opening address

Derek MacKay, Minister for Local Government and Communities


The Local Government Perspective

 Councillor Harry McGuigan, COSLA spokesperson on Community Resourcing


Trapped in debt

Yvonne MacDermid, Chief Executive, Money Advice Scotland


Developing Local Approaches

Councillor Paul Rooney, City Treasurer, Glasgow City Council - Glasgow Financial Inclusion Strategy


Closing address

Derek MacKay, Minister for Local Government and Communities


Workshop presentations


Social Impact of Gambling

Andy Todd, RCA Trust


Ethically responsible financial services

Niall Alexander, Financial Inclusion Consultant


Credit unions – part of the solution

Frank McKillop, ABCUL


Dealing with the impact

Susan McPhee, Citizens Advice Scotland

Sharon Bell, Stepchange Debt Charity


Young People’s perspective

Alison Hardy, Young Scot and Money for Life Project, South Lanarkshire


Money Advice Centres/COSLA Loan Sharks campaign

Sandra Sankey, Improvement Service

Laura Jamieson, COSLA


Prevention is key

Sharon MacPherson, Scotcash

Rhona McGrath, Renfrewshire Council


Financial Education in Scotland

Claire Orr, Accountant in Bankruptcy

Jim Lally, Education Scotland


Impact on Public Health

Alison Dowling, Blantyre and South Lanarkshire Credit Union and Janice Scouller, NHS Lanarkshire


Regulation to solve the problem? Licensing/Trading Standards

Councillor Norman MacLeod, Glasgow City Council and Tony McAuley, SCOTSS and East Lothian Council


Developing local approaches

Nahid Hanif, West Lothian Council


Responding to the cumulative impact of betting shops/new approaches for planning and licensing

Shannon Hanrahan, The Outcomes Group

Iain Leete, Local Government Association


Current regulation and measures

Rob Burkitt, The Gambling Commission

Nadege Genetay, Financial Conduct Authority

ISMoneyAdvice on Twitter


Sandra Sankey

Project Manager

Tel. 01506 283788

Email Sandra

Karen Carrick

Project Manager

Tel. 01506 283566

Email Karen


Paige Barclay

Project Officer

Tel. 01506 283800

Email Paige


phone icon
Our address
COSLA logo SOLACE logo

© Improvement Service, 2018. All Rights Reserved