Gambling Watch Scotland

The Impact of Gambling Harms



Raising Awareness, Challenging Stigma and Working to Reduce Harms from Gambling Upon the Lives of Individuals and Communities

Welcome to our site. We’re two people who’ve been working on the issue of gambling harms in Scotland and beyond. As directors of a very small Community Interest Company called The Machine Zone we’re one small enterprise among very many grassroots initiatives and organisations that are campaigning to raise awareness of gambling as a serious public health issue, fight stigma and bring about change to help prevention of harms arising in the first place. We signpost places for support, and it’s important that you start there if you have run into difficulties with gambling yourself or are affected by somebody else’s gambling.

We work with other organisations in Scotland, the UK and internationally

We’d also love to hear from you about your own experiences and work, and would welcome your writing a guest post for this site.


Our central aim is to raise awareness about gambling harms, particularly online digital gambling. We aren’t anti-gambling at all, but we think there is a need for closer regulation of things like product design and saturation advertising and sports sponsorship.

By raising awareness we hope both to challenge stigma and encourage those hurting from gambling to seek support. There are far more people harmed by gambling than generally recognised – one in fifteen people in our cities. So if you are hurting from your own or somebody else’s gambling, know you’re not alone, and that there is no need for shame in seeking support from any of the places mentioned in the box to the right.

We’ve been holding events in Glasgow where we’ve screened our film and engaged in discussion with frontline workers and the general public. You can see more about this on our Glasgow City Gambling Harms website. Now we are moving beyond Glasgow, our first event will be in Inverclyde in May 2023. If you’d like us to hold an event with you elsewhere in Scotland please get in touch.


If you are suffering harms from gambling, either your own or somebody else’s, check out the support available.

It can be lonely and scary and there may be several issues you have to deal with. These include relationships, debt, mental health issues, shame and guilt and more. Be assured. Many have suffered similarly. Acknowledging your difficulties and sharing them is half the battle. There are many sources of support from your GP to Citizens Advice, from your family to mutual support groups such as Gamblers Anonymous or SMART Recovery. There are support telephone lines and web links to services which have helped many thousands of people over many decades.

We constantly update links to support. As a unique individual you’ll find what fits you best. No ‘one size fits all’ but by clicking on the button you’ll be on your way to finding good possibilities. And just doing this will give some relief and ease the pressure.

One Last Spin: the film

In helping raise awareness we produced with Glasgow-based Reverie Films a documentary called One Last Spin. We hope to stage community and online screenings and see the film used as a resource in training and development for frontline workers . You can visit the film’s website and in particular find here information about how to view the film with suggestions of how it may be used.

One Last Spin: the song and music video

The wonderful song writer and musician Amanda Lehmann gifted us this beautiful song to go with the film. The way the song came about is a story in itself which you can read here. Amanda continues also to work on raising awareness about possible harms from gambling.

Then after the song was released COPEScotland‘s brilliant creative artist produced a stunning movie video released in september 2022 to accompany the song. Watch it and listen to a sad, haunting and beautiful song about gambling harm here.

And visit it Amanda’s great website to find out about her.




Visit our Glasgow City Gambling Harms site for lots that is relevant to all of Scotland.

There is a bundle of useful stuff for frontline workers including a resource library.

We’d love to hear from you including if you’d like to watch the film with a view to using it in your own event or for training. Use the contact form or drop us a line at

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