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Gaming permits for clubs

Unlike public houses and other alcohol-licensed premises, licensed club premises may apply for Club Gaming Permits and Club Machine Permits.

Both permits allow the club to have no more than three gaming machines from the following table:

Permitted gaming machines
Machine category Maximum stake Maximum prize
B3A £2 £500
B4 £2 £400
C £1 £100
D: Non-money prize (other than a crane grab machine) 30p £8
D: Non-money prize (crane grab machine) £1 £50
D: Money prize 10p £5
D: Combined money and non-money prize (other than a coin pusher or penny falls machine) 10p £8 (of which no more than £5 may be a money prize)
D: Combined money and non-money prize (coin pusher or penny falls machine) 20p £20 (of which no more than £10 may be a money prize)

 

Gaming in clubs is also subject to three conditions:

  1. The club must not deduct money from sums staked or won
  2. The participation fee must not exceed the amount prescribed below
  3. The game that takes place on the premises must not be linked with any game on any other premises

Licensed clubs that do not hold either permit can still host equal chance gaming, which includes games such as backgammon, mah-jong, rummy, kalooki, dominoes, bingo, poker, and cribbage. See ‘Clubs without gaming permits’ below.

Raffles and tombolas

Find out more on our Small society lottery page.

Fast track procedure

There is a fast-track procedure for clubs in England and Wales, which hold a club premises certificate under the Licensing Act 2003. Under the fast-track procedure there is no opportunity for objections to be made by the Commission or the police, and the grounds upon which an authority can refuse a permit are reduced.

This is because the club or institute will already have been through a licensing process in relation to its club premises certificate under the Licensing Act 2003, and it is therefore unnecessary to impose the full requirements of Schedule 12 of the Gambling Act 2005. Commercial clubs cannot hold club premises certificates under the Licensing Act 2003 and so cannot use the fast-track procedure.

Club Gaming Permit

A Club Gaming Permit allows a club the provision of no more than three gaming machines. These machines must be from categories B3A, B4, C or D of the table above, but only one B3A machine is allowed on the premises under the certificate.

Club Gaming Permits allow a less restricted set of regulations on other types of gaming permitted on the premises.

You may apply for a Club Gaming Permit using the correct form and fee:

Members’ clubs or miners’ welfare institutes

Equal-chance gaming is permitted

Stakes are limited to:

  • Bingo: £2,000 per week without an operating licence
  • Other gaming: no limit

Prizes are limited to:

  • Bingo: £2,000 per week without an operating licence
  • Other gaming: no limit

Maximum participation fees (per person per day):

  • Bridge or whist: £20 (on a day when no other facilities for gaming are provided)
  • Other gaming: £3

Permitted bankers or unequal chance gaming:

  • Pontoon
  • Chemin de Fer


Bridge or whist club

Permitted equal-chance gaming:

  • Bridge
  • Whist

No limits on stakes
No limits on prizes

Maximum participation fees (per person per day):

  • £18 without Club Gaming Permit
  • £20 with Club Gaming Permit

Bankers or unequal chance gaming:

  • None permitted

Club Machine Permit

Club premises that don’t wish to have access to the extensive gaming activities permitted by the Club Gaming Permit can apply for a Club Machine Permit. This authorises the permit holder to have no more than three gaming machines of categories B3A, B4, C and D in the table above.

Commercial clubs are not permitted to have any non-machine gaming other than exempt gaming under section 269 of the Gambling Act 2005, so they should apply for a Club Machine Permit, although they will not be authorised to site any B3A machine offering lottery games in their club.

You may apply for a club machine permit by submitting the correct form and fee:

 

Members’ clubs or commercial clubs

Equal-chance gaming is permitted

Stakes are limited to: 

  • Poker:£1,000 per week, £250 per day, or £10 per person per game
  • Bingo: £2,000 per week without an operating licence
  • Other gaming: no limit

Prizes are limited to:

  • Poker: £250 per game
  • Bingo: £2,000 per week without an operating licence
  • Other gaming: no limit

Maximum participation fees (per person per day):

  • Bridge or whist: £18 (on a day when no other facilities for gaming are provided)
  • Other gaming: £1 (members club) or £3 (commercial club)

Bankers or unequal chance gaming:

  • None permitted

Clubs without gaming permits

The table below states the regulations that must be adhered to when hosting equal chance gaming without a Club Gaming Permit or Club Machine Permit.

These types of games should be supervised by a nominated gaming supervisor and comply with any code of practice issued by the Gambling Commission under section 24 of the Act.

Members’ clubs, commercial clubs or miners’ welfare institutes

Equal-chance gaming is permitted

Stakes are limited to:

  • Poker: £1,000 per week, £250 per day, or £10 per person per game
  • Bingo: £2,000 per week without an operating licence

Other gaming:

  • no limit

Prizes are limited to:

  • Poker: £250 per game
  • Bingo: £2,000 per week without an operating licence

Other gaming:

  • no limit

Maximum participation fees (per person per day):

  • Bridge or whist: £18 (on a day when no other facilities for gaming are provided)
  • Other gaming: £1

Bankers or unequal chance gaming:

  • None permitted


Other useful information

The Gambling Commission provides further information about gambling in alcohol-licensed premises.

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