Kingston - Chelsea Heights Hotel and Woolworth Supreme Court Appeal

We were thrilled by the passionate community turn out to draw attention to a loophole in current planning laws on Friday.

We attended a flash rally in Chelsea, hosted by the Alliance for Gambling Reform, to show community opposition to the proposal to build a supermarket close to a gambling venue. We believe our community shouldn't be exposed to the risk of gambling harm just by buying groceries and we saw many of you agreed.

Thanks for showing up!

Tim Costello and Mayor Staikos Chelsea Heights Flash Rally.jpg

The Rev. Tim Costello speaking at a flash rally in Chelsea on Friday with Mayor Staikos, community groups and lived-experience speakers.

In 2021 VCAT approved a Woolworth’s shopping centre just 75m from the entrance to the Chelsea Heights Hotel, despite the City of Kingston rejecting the planning permit. The Chelsea Heights Hotel has 40 poker machines and takes almost $6 million from the community. 

This amount could increase if this proposal for a Woolworths Supermarket is approved, given the close proximity and accessibility to the poker machine venue it provides. The community should not be confronted with gambling venues while undertaking everyday activities such as doing their grocery shopping.

Under the Victorian Planning Act, poker machine venues cannot be built next to supermarkets and retail spaces, however there is no clause to prohibit the opposite- building a supermarket next to a poker machine venue.

We have made it easy for you to ask that the Minister closes this loophole and show your objection to Woolworths exploiting this loophole.

All you have to do is fill in your name, email address and click send and an email will automatically be sent to the Minister and Woolworths on your behalf!