The Gambling Act 2005 came into force in September 2007. The legislation can be viewed here.
The central government department with responsibility for the legislation is the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. More information can be found on their website
The Act comprehensively updates existing gambling laws that are several decades old, providing new powers and protections for both new and old forms of gambling. The Act has three clear objectives:
- Keeping gambling crime free
- Making sure that gambling is fair and open
- Protecting children and vulnerable adults
The Act covers two main activities:
- Providing facilities for gambling
- Using premises for gambling
In either case, you must hold the appropriate permission. Permission may come from a licence, permit, or registration granted according to the Act, or from an exemption given by the Act.
Local authorities licence gambling premises within their area, as well as undertaking functions in relation to lower stake gaming machines and clubs and miners' welfare institutes. Licensing authorities will undertake inspections and enforce the conditions on these issued licences, permits and notices.
The Gambling Commission shares with local licensing authorities the responsibility for granting gaming and betting permissions. You will need to contact them for information on operating and personal licence requirements. For more information visit www.gamblingcommision.gov.uk
Providing facilities for gambling will be subject to varying degrees of regulation, depending on:
- Type of gambling
- Means by which it is conducted
- People by whom and to whom it is offered