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Last Updated: Tuesday, 17 July 2007, 10:31 GMT 11:31 UK
Assurance given over casino plan
Slot machines in a casino
Dumfries Council will be asked if it wants to go ahead
A casino project in the South of Scotland will be allowed to go ahead, if the local council wants it to.

The Stranraer scheme seemed in jeopardy after Prime Minister Gordon Brown signalled a re-think of the Manchester super super-casino and 16 smaller ones.

But UK Culture Secretary James Purnell has told MPs that the local authorities involved should be able to proceed.

Mr Brown has said that regeneration may be a better way of meeting the economic and social needs of hard-pressed areas.

'Push ahead'

His statement last week threw into doubt the future of the smaller associated casinos - of which Stranraer would be one.

Mr Purnell has now clarified the position, saying the various councils concerned would be asked if they wanted to go ahead.

Anyone who had had a change of heart, he said, would not be included in the new legislation and added that it only required eight licences to be awarded.

Labour Dumfries and Galloway MP Russell Brown said the comments meant Stranraer was still in line for a casino development to boost the regeneration of the Waterfront - should a decision be taken locally to push ahead.

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