NEWSAGENTS in Bolton and GM have slammed plans to take the National Lottery ‘digital’.

Bosses at Sazka, a bidder for the lottery licence held by Camelot, want to take ticket sales online.

But Stuart Reddish, national president of the Federation of Independent Retailers, has blasted the approach.

Sir Keith Mills, Sazka’s chairman, claims the draw need s to be “reinvigorated” to attract more players.

But Mr Reddish said: ““Taking the Lottery online makes no sense at a time when the public have been rediscovering the benefits of shopping at their local convenience stores.

“The proposals would amount to major kick in the teeth for the very community retailers who, over the last 27 years, have made the lottery the success it is.”

Camelot has held the licence since the National Lottery was first launched in 1994. Their current 14-year term will end in 2023.

Mr Reddish added: “From Sir Keith’s comments, it sadly appears that Sazka sees the National Lottery as global gambling money spinner, supported by big business and investment companies and distant from the players, retailers and communities that it is supposed to support.

“(We) welcome dialogue with anyone wishing to bid for the lottery. We represent a large number of outlets, so anyone bidding for the new licence will need to work with us.”