The Gambling Act 2005 came fully into force on 1st September 2007, with the responsibility for gambling split between local authorities and the Gambling Commission.
The Act provides a regulatory system for controlling the provision of all commercial gambling in England and Wales, with the exception of the National Lottery and spread betting.
There are three licensing objectives which underpin the legislation:
- Preventing gambling from being a source of crime and disorder, being associated with crime and disorder, or being used to support crime
- Ensuring that gambling is conducted in a fair and open way
- Protecting children and other vulnerable people from being harmed or exploited by gambling
Compliance and enforcement
The Act established two comprehensive offences: providing facilities for gambling or using premises for gambling, in either case without the appropriate permission. Such permissions may be granted by way of a licence, permit or registration or are otherwise given an exemption by the Act. Where permission to provide facilities for gambling is granted, it will be subject to varying degrees of regulation. This regulation is dependent upon the type of gambling, the means by which it is carried out and the people by whom and to whom it is offered.
The Act provides the Gambling Commission, local authorities, licensing authorities and the police with the powers necessary to monitor compliance with the provision of the Act and with licence conditions, and to investigate suspected offences.
Gambling Act policy
The Act requires local authorities to adopt and publish a statement of principles. The policy is valid for a maximum period of five years. During this period the local authority will monitor any developments and changes in legislation and will update and consult on the policy as required.
The Gambling Commission issues operating licences to individuals and companies who intend to provide facilities for certain types of gambling, for example casino operating licence, bingo operating licence or a gaming machine operating licence. The Gambling Commission also deals with personal licence for operators.
The Council is responsible for:
- Gambling premises licence
- Casino premises licence
- Bingo premises licence
- Adult gaming centre premises licence
- Family entertainment centre premises licence
- Betting premises licence
- Gambling permits
How to apply
For information on making an application, please select the appropriate council below.
Objecting to a licence
Local residents, ward councillors, resident associations and local business or business groups may make representation to the local Authority about the grant or change of a licence. The responsible authorities – Police, Fire Service, Environmental Health, Planning and the Safeguarding Children’s Board – may also make representation or objection.
Statutory guidance issued to local authorities by the Gambling Commission.