Do I need a licence - betting?
There are three types of licence that betting business owners
may need to apply for:
Your business may need all three kinds.
The Gambling Commission issues operating licences and personal
licences; premises licences are issued by local licensing
Those wishing to provide facilities for betting on tracks
(on-course bookmakers), are required by the Administration of Gambling on Tracks
Ltd (AGT) to hold public liability insurance and a valid
Horserace Betting Levy Board
certificate. For more information, about these requirements you
should contact AGT directly.
Do I need an operating licence?
In most circumstances, you do
need an operating licence. You need an operating licence from us if
you are providing betting services, for example betting
shops, on-course betting, betting websites and telephone
services, betting intermediaries such as betting exchanges, pool
betting and trading rooms. Find out which type of operating licence you need, and how
You do not need an operating
licence from us for helping people make bets if:
- two or more people who live in the same house are betting
against each other
- people who work for, and have a contract with the same
employer, bet against each other.
If you want to run a race night, which is an
event where participants stake money on the outcome of recorded or
virtual races to raise money for a charity or other good cause, you
can do so as long as you tell the players what the event is for and
who you are raising money for, and you give all the money raised at
the event to the good cause.
This includes any entrance fees, sponsorship,
fees for traders’ stalls and other fees, although you can deduct
any costs reasonably incurred from organising the event, including
the cost of prizes.
Players must not make more than one payment (whether as an
admission or participation fee, stake or other charge, or a
combination of those charges), and this payment must not exceed £8.
The total amount or value of prizes for all the games played at
your event must not exceed £600.
Do I need a personal licence?
If you do need an operating licence, you may also
need a personal management licence (PML) unless you
qualify as a small-scale operator.
Anyone who is responsible for any of these areas of your
organisation will need to apply for a PML:
- Overall strategy and delivery of gambling operations.
- Financial planning, control and budgeting.
- Marketing and commercial development.
- Regulatory compliance.
- Gambling related IT provision and security.
- Management of the licensed activity for a particular area in
Great Britain where you have five or more sets of premises for
which you hold a premises licence.
Individuals who perform more than one of these management
functions at the same time only need to hold one
PML. Apply for a personal management licence.
Do I need a premises licence?
Betting shops, trading rooms and tracks need a
premises licence or permit from the local licensing
Find out more about applying for a
premises licence, or contact your local licensing
Page last reviewed: March 2013