Bacta chief executive John White said the decision to keep copper coins would aid arcades in their role as the “engine rooms” of the coast.
For its part, Bacta breathed “a sigh of relief” on behalf of industry stakeholders, following confirmation from the Treasury that the future of the one and two penny coins had been “secured for years to come.”
The trade association said it had already “successfully challenged” a suggestion by government to do away with low denomination coins last year, when in his spring statement chancellor Phillip Hammond suggested that pennies were “obsolete.”
In a new statement, Bacta executives said that Hammond’s comments had prompted “an immediate response” from them, and that they had acted similarly this year in their feedback to a treasury consultation as to the continued minting of copper coins.
“Coastal arcades across the country can now breathe a collective sigh of relief,” said association chief executive John White. “The removal of our smallest denominations would have a devastating impact on seaside arcades that stimulate local economies and tourism. Bacta has been instrumental in the public call for Treasury to rethink the removal of our coppers from circulation.”“2p pushers are a British pastime that many remember fondly from childhood, they can be found across hundreds of arcades across the coast,” he continued.
“Removing the 2p coins would have led to the extinction of the arcades that house these machines and the resorts who depend on them.”
Meanwhile, White went on to highlight the wider implications of a prospective abolition of the two penny piece – not just for the arcade sector, but for Britain’s coastal economy as a whole.
“Arcades are the economic engine rooms for often poor coastal communities [and] the removal of 2ps would have placed increased pressure on an industry already facing tough conditions, particularly in areas of the country where the support and investment is most needed,” he commented. “We welcome any decision that supports businesses and local tourism in seaside towns.”