Gambling Act 2005
On the 1 September the Gambling Act 2005 ("the Act") replaced most of the existing law about gambling in Great Britain and put in place an improved, more comprehensive structure of gambling regulation.
The Act introduced a unified regulator for gambling in Great Britain, the Gambling Commission, and a new licensing regime for commercial gambling (to be conducted by the Commission or by Licensing Authorities, depending on the matter to be licensed).
The Act removed from licensing justices all responsibility for granting gaming and betting permissions, which they had exercised previously. Instead, the Gambling Commission and ourselves will share between us responsibility for all those matters previously regulated by the licensing justices.
For the purposes of the Act, "gambling" includes gaming, betting and lotteries. The Council can receive applications under the new Act for amusement arcades, casinos, bookmakers, tracks and sporting sites, bingo halls and pubs/clubs wanting to have gaming machines.
The licensing authority’s main functions under the Act are:
- Consideration of applications for premises licences and provisional statements
- The issue of permits in relation to the use of gaming machines
- Receipt and endorsement of Temporary Use Notices and Occasional Use Notices
- Registration of small society lotteries.
The Act contains three licensing objectives which underpin the functions that the Gambling Commission and Councils, acting in their capacity as licensing authorities, will perform. These objectives are central to the new regulatory regime created by the Act and are:
- Preventing gambling from being a source of crime or disorder, being associated with crime or disorder, or being used to support crime
- Ensuring that gambling is conducted in a fair and open way
- Protecting children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling.
Three types of licence are required by the new Act:
- An operator licence concerned with the management and conduct of gambling
- A personal licence for persons with key operational functions connected with the gambling business
- A premises licence for the property where the gambling takes place.
Operator's licences and personal licences are issued and regulated by the Gambling Commission, whereas responsibility for the issue and regulation of premises licences will lie with local authorities.
Application forms can be obtained from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport
Consultation on the Review of Licensing Policy
The Gambling Act requires the Authority to publish a statement of licensing policy (“Policy”) with regard to the undertaking of its licensing functions, and such Policy is to have effect for no longer than 3 years, after which time it must be reviewed.
The existing Policy took effect in December 2012, and therefore a new Policy will need to be effective by no later than 27 December 2015.
The Licensing Authority is therefore seeking views as to whether any further amendments need to be made to the Policy, in addition to the removal of paragraph 1.2 which relates to Council’s Core Values, as these are currently being reviewed, and would be obsolete by the time the revised Policy is published, and the inclusion of two new paragraphs at 1.9 and 1.10.
The draft Policy was approved (subject to some minor amendments) at the Licensing Policy and Planning Committee in July 2015, and will be taken to Council for approval and publication later this year.
Statement of Licensing Policy - effective from 27 December 2012 (pdf - 320kb)
Draft Statement of Licensing Policy (pdf - 654kb)
The Policy may also be viewed at Epsom Town Hall, The Parade, Epsom, KT18 5BY or at libraries within the Borough during normal opening hours.
Publications and other materials related to the Gambling Act 2005 are available from the Department for Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) web site.