Due to the impact Covid-19 is having on operations across the UK we have had to reduce our phoneline opening hours.

Our phonelines are open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 10 am and 4 pm.

The contact us service is also available for answers to common questions and we will aim to respond to these enquiries as quickly as possible.

If you have a question about your gambling, or the gambling of someone close to you, our FAQs from gambling consumers during lockdown may provide valuable information. Our what we do page also provides an overview of the types of queries we are able to help consumers with in the first instance.

The National Gambling Helpline is also available 24 hours a day, seven days a week through GamCare. It is there to support those suffering from gambling problems or those concerned about the affect gambling is having on people close to them. You can call them free on 0808 8020 133, or visit gamcare.org.uk.
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Licensing authority annual returns portal open until 10 May  

Many thanks to the @100 LAs that have already submitted their 2018/19 annual return. The deadline for submission is 10 May 2019 and failure to submit within this timescale will result in the matter being escalated to the Head of Service, and ultimately Chief Executive.  We will be sending out a two weeks to go reminder at the end of April.

Please remember that the passcode will only work with a registered user email address. The passcode is specific to your LA not to an individual so multiple email addresses can be registered per LA, but we would encourage you to register your licensing@ email address, if you have not already done so.

Please contact lareturns@gamblingcommisison.gov.uk  if you have not received any correspondence about the annual returns.

Impact of reduced B2 stakes

Bookmakers Paddy Power Betfair and BetFred are being investigated following the introduction of new products which undermined the reduction in B2 stakes.  A third bookmaker who was poised to launch a new product, was also warned.  LAs are encouraged to share intel/discuss any concerns with their local compliance managers.  We will provide further updates as the Commission’s work progresses.

Betwatch in Birmingham

The Commission’s CEO Neil McArthur recently spoke about the success of the Betwatch scheme in Birmingham, a partnership between operators, West Midlands police and Birmingham city council and the Commission. The scheme is to keep people safe and build relationships between staff in bookies and neighbourhood policing teams to detect and antisocial and problematic customers.  More than a dozen customers have been banned from Birmingham bookmakers in just a year after being accused of crimes including drug-dealing and attacking staff.  There are now over 40 Betwatch schemes in operation around the country and an information note is available for those interested in setting a new scheme.

New Business Plan published

We recently published our 2019-20 Business Plan which outlines the key areas of focus for our work for the next 12 months in terms of protecting consumers, preventing harm, raising standards, optimising returns to good causes from lotteries, and improving the way we regulate.

Next: Consultations