Welsh gamblers staked over a billion on gambling terminals in 2012

More than £1.5 billion was staked on electronic betting machines found in bookmakers and casinos in Wales last year, according to a report by Fairer Gambling.

Reported by bbc.co.uk, the figures are the equivalent of £650 a year for every adult in Wales who gambled on such machines. This managed to hit £1000 a head when regionalised to Cardiff Central and Wrexham.

Overall, bookmakers managed to make more than £50 million from these machines, dubbed Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs), last year - an increase of 5.6 per cent on 2011's figures.

However, the Association of British Bookmakers denied there was a problem, reports walesonline.co.uk.

For those with an addiction to gambling, such terminals can be an issue. However, there are avenues that people can take to uncover the root cause for their addiction. Counselling courses, for example, can help highlight underlying issues.

Adrian Parkinson, a campaigner with Fairer Gambling, commented on the figures: "Our objective is to see restrictions put in place on the casino content on these machines. All the problems emanate from the casino content.

"When the machines were first rolled out staff at the bookmakers started telling us there was a problem. The words that were being used were 'addiction' and one of the managers described them as the 'crack cocaine of the gambling industry'," he added.